North Carolina Early Learning and Development Progressions: Birth to Five

Domain: NC Foundations for Early Learning: Health and Physical Development (HPD)

Subdomain: Self-Care

Goal: Children develop independence in caring for themselves and their environment.

Skill Progression: Eating/drinking

Age: 21-24 Months

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Point of spoon enters mouth first

Situations for Observation of Skill

Observe the child during snack with a travel cup with a straw and a pudding or applesauce cup with a pull top.

Elicitation Strategy

The adult has an empty water bottle and asks the child to take off the lid to put water in it. (Make sure lid is not on too tight.) Adult starts to pull the lid off the snack cup, then stabilizes it so the child can finish opening it.

Behavior Observed

Orients the spoon toward the mouth with the tip first.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

The child is developing the ability to use hands together, use wrist rotation, and lip and tongue movements in eating and drinking skills. These skills make mealtimes neater, faster, and more independent. Use a shorter straw and cup if the child has difficulty sucking up a long straw. Early childhood educators and parents can model using their tongues to clear their lips, so the child will model.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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