Mealtimes are an important aspect of family life. Children begin to develop self-feeding skills from birth. Self-feeding is a very complex task and it is common for children to have difficulty using cutlery to feed themselves. It usually takes until a child is 7 years old before they can successfully use cutlery to feed themselves without being too messy. There are a variety of tools that can be used to support children with mealtimes if they continue to find these skills challenging. Many of these are readily available and are not seen as specialist equipment.
When learning to eat themselves it is important that children are allowed to get messy. There are a variety of bibs/aprons which your child can wear while they are learning to eat to save their clothes. You can get bibs with a lip to catch food or aprons with sleeves as well as standard bibs and bandanas. An old adult shirt put on backwards can also be helpful.