When you infant is between 12 and 18 months it is time to start introducing your baby to the spoon. Most infants are curious about using silverware. They watch their parents and older siblings eating with silverware and they are interested in mimicking what they see.
There are several product options available to prepare your infant to use a spoon on their own. A fresh food feeder gives your infant the ability to practice eating using a utensil without having to be coordinated enough to balance food on a spoon. Parents are able to place pieces of whole, fresh food, such as fresh fruit into the feeder and the infant can chew on the food without risk of choking if they bite off small pieces.
Special grooved infant spoons are available with large handles that are easy for infants to hold. The grooves on the spoon help food like applesauce or infant cereal attach to the spoon. This can be less frustrating for infants than traditional baby spoons.
Play with your food
The first several times you give your infant a spoon they will most likely prefer to play with the spoon rather than try to eat. This is okay. Play is an important part of the learning experience for infants. They may practice picking up the food with their fingers and placing it on the spoon. It will take some time for infants to develop the coordination and balance needed to feed themselves with a spoon.
Infant Spoon Snacks
A fun way to help your infant learn to use a spoon is to dip the spoon either in peanut butter or cream cheese, depending on your baby’s food preference and giving them a bowl of small oat cereal. Be sure that if you are using peanut butter that your infant is over 12 months old and has been exposed to peanut butter in small amounts to be sure that they do not have a food allergy.
The peanut butter or cream cheese will help the cereal pieces stick to the spoon and give your infant the feeling of success. The extra flavor of the peanut butter or cream cheese is a fun addition to the dry cereal for your infant. You can experiment with different food combinations to give your infant some variety.
Some fun food combinations would be:
Peanut butter and oat cereal
Cream cheese and oat cereal
Jelly and rice puff cereal
Peanut butter and banana slices