A network to share best practices for children with special needs
Self-feeding skills for children with cognitive/motor skill delays can be challenging. At around age 2, typically developing children acquire wrist supination skills (turning hand towards palm up position) which allow for more refined control of the spoon. The child is able to scoop the food and angle the spoon properly to bring to the mouth. Many children with special needs lack this refinement in wrist movements so are constantly struggling with the scoop to mouth sequence. Enter the SteadySpoon. This weighted spoon has a ball bearing type center that allows the spoon bowl to stay level no matter how the spoon is handled or angled. As an OT, I have taught many children with CP, TBI, ataxia or other challenges to become successful self-feeders using the SteadySpoon and starting with thicker foods such as oatmeal or mashed potatoes.
The Pediatric Easy Grip Fork and Spoon are also great eating tools. These utensils are already angled inward so require less wrist movement.
Some children may always require the use of an adapted spoon or fork while others can transition to normal utensils. What are your favroite meal time tips for the I Can Do It Myself Child?
Find these and other weighted and adaptive utensils for special needs and handicapped eaters.