That is the new question for me!
I have been reading all sorts of information about it on-line. I really like this idea of letting Ben “play” with his food and discover how to feed himself. I kind of feel like foods/mealtimes should be more about discovering new textures and tastes, than to pack him full of food so he will sleep =0) If he’s hungry, he’ll nurse! Since Ben is still deriving over 75% of his daily nutrition from my milk or formula, learning to eat can be more about discovery for him! (And this little guy LOVES to discover new things!)
I like how one author put it:
“This approach to weaning offers a baby the opportunity to discover what other foods have to offer as part of finding out about the world around him. It utilizes his desire to explore and experiment, and to mimic the activities of others. Allowing the baby to set the pace of each meal, and maintaining an emphasis on play and exploration rather than on eating, enables the transition to solid foods to take place as naturally as possible. This is because it would appear that what motivates babies to make this transition is curiosity, not hunger.”
Here is another quote I like:
“It appears that a baby’s general development keeps pace with the development of his ability to manage food in his mouth, and to digest it. A baby who is struggling to get food into his mouth is probably not quite ready to eat it. It is important to resist the temptation to ‘help’ the baby in these circumstances since his own developmental abilities are what ensure that weaning takes place at the right pace for him. This process is also what keeps him safe from choking on small pieces of food, since, if he is not yet able to pick up small objects using his finger and thumb, he will not be able to get, for example, a pea or a raisin into his mouth. Once he is able to do this, he will have developed the necessary oral skills to deal with it.”
Anyway, I still have A LOT of reading and experimenting to do. Please don’t take anything I just wrote as an “I’m Right and You’re Wrong” lecture. I am just interested in trying something like this….and, I’m hoping to find more information about it before I do.
Meanwhile, I am actually really excited about buying broccoli tonight so that I can give him the cooked stalk to discover. Chances are he won’t eat much of it! Chances are this will probably be one big Benjamin mess! But, come on! The child reaches for EVERYTHING we eat….and, he seems much more interested in putting the spoon to his own mouth than to have it fed to him. I am curious to see what happens!
To my readers, however few:
7 years ago