This is a cartoon that I’ve shared previously, and it has pretty much been how my dinner had been for the first two years+ of my child’s life! Fortunately, things have improved, there’s less scratching at the table, and we are now dealing more with the issues that normal family deals with. So, I’ve put my questions to Angela Jacobsen in this Google Hangout:
Q1 – How to move the child away from the TV during dinner time? (A tantrum-free method please!)
Angela: It’s best not to turn on the TV before meal time, but instead of another activity that leads up to the meal. TV can be used as a reward for the child to eat the veggies and to finish the meal earlier. Half hour is about the time for a meal.
Angela also shared (in response to Zurina‘s question) that food not eaten should be kept aside, can be refrigerated/re-heated when the child’s hungry. An alternative food should not be served so as not to encourage the child to not eat proper meal and trade for something less healthy.
The point about meal-time as a family is for everyone to be sitting down together, and even if the parent is not eating, taking some downtime to sit down is important (or eat some of kids’ food/soup/salad).
Q2: If the parents’ mealtime is much later than the child, how should the family eat together?
Angela: The child’s dessert can be eaten later, when the parents are having their meals. Again, the important thing is for everyone in the family to find that time to sit together!
I’m working on that everyday, do share your family time in the comment or head to Angela’s googleplus page for more hangouts!