It must be so hard being little! I have watched my children go through so many phases, but one thing in particular stands out to me. They have ALWAYS wanted to do so much more for themselves. Long before they are even capable of accomplishing a task, they want to give it a shot.
It is this determination that has often made me think about how I can help them to be able to do more for themselves. We’ve tried tons of products for kids in the past four years, but the following items really made a difference in terms of our children learning to be more self-sufficient.
These brightly colored bowls have a rubber gasket on the bottom that keep the bowl stable while little ones are learning to feed themselves. The shape of the bowl/lip also help to push food onto the spoon for less spill offs.
I’ve gotten many, many different types of sippy cups and my favorites are these. They are the only ones that are as close to no spill as possible. I mean, it will spill if thrown violently to the floor (which happens on occasion) but otherwise spill proof and not subject to leaking with pressure changes like other models.
I can’t take credit for this one. My sister actually found these socks and gave them to my daughter as a gift. And I’ve since bought several sets for my son as well. The little loops on the sides are much easier for a toddler to grab than trying to use the sides of a typical sock. If the look of the loops bother you, they are actually easy to tuck in.
Seatbelt Buckle Holders
It’s hard enough for me as an adult to reach over the booster seat for my daughter to get her seatbelt buckled. I was skeptical about this product at first, but it holds the buckle pretty firmly, making it easier for my daughter to be able to get the latch in by herself.
Removable Potty Seats
As you probably know, there are tons of potty seats available. We chose this particular version because we wanted one that was fully removable, had handles on both sides, and had a splatter guard in the front. It is also antimicrobial, which is a plus.
We have four different types stools in our house. Yes, FOUR. Stools are one of the easiest ways for little people to be able to participate more in their environment. In the kitchen, I wanted stools that were on the larger side (large surface area), very stable (rubber feet), lightweight (so the kids can move them), tall enough (two steps), and flush with the counter (to avoid leaning). After experimenting with several versions, here is my favorite that met these requirements.
For around the house, in bathrooms, etc., I like to use these folding stools. I wanted something that was tall enough that they could use it to get on the toilet or reach the sink and wanted it to be able to be stowed away easily. In addition to Amazon, I seen this model at both grocery stores and Walmart. My only word of caution on these is that there is a risk of pinching when a child (or adult) is trying to unfold the stool – this part should be supervised.
Any coat rack or multipurpose hooks would work, but the trick is to install it low so that the little ones can reach it to hang up their own coats. This idea is also great for additional belongings like lunch bags and are great for use in their own rooms as well.
Hands Free Faucet
Warning! This one’s a bit extravagant. That said, I will personally never go back to using a non-hands free faucet. I love the fact that I can turn it on with a clean part of my arm when my hands are full of chicken goop. When it comes to the kids, even with a stool it is still hard for them to reach most faucet handles and control the temperature. They have mastered the touch function and have also learned the color red/purple/blue codes for temperature, which warns them if the water is too hot. Really great product.
Have you found any other great products that help your children to be more self-sufficient? I am always interested in hearing your ideas.
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