Many different adults can impact the way a baby or child eats, including parents/caregivers and providers. However, those important adults may not understand or practice responsive feeding – the process of recognizing an infant's cues for hunger or fullness and responding appropriately.
The National Center on Early Childhood Health and Wellness (NCECHW) has created a series of print and video resources on Responsive Feeding. Though the resources were developed for home visitors, they can be of great value to child care providers who want to strengthen their understanding of responsive feeding and why it’s important and learn strategies to support the practice in their setting. Food can be a sensitive topic for families, rooted in the family's culture and traditions. The Responsive Feeding resources offer guidance on how to have respectful conversations with families on healthy eating practices.
The resources include:
- Supporting Healthy Eating at Home, a short video exploring five key ideas to help guide you in working with families
- Healthy Home Visiting: Responsive Feeding Podcast – an audio-only version of 1)
- Responsive Feeding Webinars – three short learning modules:
- Module One. Learn what responsive feeding is and how to support it.
- Module Two. Explore the role meal time can play as a learning opportunity to support development.
- Module Three. Learn how to engage families in a discussion about healthy habits and routines at home.
- Three PDFs about Responsive Feeding:
- What to Know Before You Go – key messages about responsive feeding
- During the Visit – strategies and talking points to support families as they nurture healthy feeding practices
- For Expectant Families – things for new and expectant parents to consider when feeding a newborn
The Responsive Feeding resources live on the Early Childhood Learning & Knowledge Center (ECLKC) website.