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Finger Painting with Food


Henry turned six months old this week and he has become fascinated with textures. Toys that crinkle are suddenly fascinating. He reaches out for flowers and tree branches as we pass by on our evening walk through the neighborhood. He is exploring the world through the shapes and textures of new objects, and food is a natural extension of this learning process. So as I am thinking about new foods for Henry, I want to give him an opportunity to try out new textures as well.

I decided to begin with two classic starter foods for babies -- peas and avocado. Henry has already tried out the flavor of peas through soup, but avocado is a new taste for him. Since we are trying to bypass spoon-feeding, I wanted to see how he managed these on his own.

The Results

Henry enjoyed finger painting with the pea puree, but he had trouble eating the peas. He could pick up a handful but the peas just remained in his fist when he tried to put them in his mouth. He did have a fun time smearing them around on his tray though.
Henry enjoyed squishing the peas on his tray, but not many made it to his mouth.
Henry was quickly frustrated by the slice of avocado. Since I don’t typically eat avocado with my fingers, I did not realize how slippery it is. When Henry tried to pick it up, the avocado slid right out of his hand. I eventually smashed some with a fork, which he enjoyed using as another finger painting medium.  
Henry made repeated attempts to pick up the avocado but it was very tricky for little hands.
Although peas and avocado are on the top of many lists as good first foods for babies, they did not work well for us on the first try. Henry had fun playing with the new textures, but almost nothing actually made it to his mouth. These shapes and textures are quite tricky for little hands. If we’re going to let Henry feed himself, then I am going to need some help figuring out what will work best for his skill level.

When I told a friend about the slippery avocado, she suggested mashing it together with crushed Cheerios as one way to help Henry gain some traction. Since I cannot stand the smell of Cheerios, we might try crushed crackers or bread crumbs instead. Do you have any creative tips and tricks for dealing with slippery finger foods?
Do you have ideas for helping Henry with slippery finger foods?

Comments

  1. You can get mesh feeders, Nuby makes a nice one. We've used that for things like banana and peaches.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Rayna. I'll have to check those out.

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