Making the dinner table toddler friendly

Toddlers are energetic and curious; sitting down for any length of time is simply not something they want to do! This can make dinner time a little bit chaotic. It’s not always going to be plain sailing with an active toddler around but here are a few tips that may encourage a more peaceful dinner table:

A new seat at the table

Hard to believe, but here comes (yet another) toddler transition: the move from high chair to table. A dining booster seat can make your toddler feel more grown up and more likely to participate in family dinners.


As your toddler gets a bit older, occasionally let them serve themselves. Allowing your toddler to serve themselves empowers them and encourages independence. You might be surprised at how much more willing they are to try new foods!

‘Special plate and cup’

There aren’t too many parents that are ready to hand over their good dishware to their toddlers. So instead of saying they can’t use an ‘adult’ plate, give your toddler their own ‘special’ plate and cup that only they can use.

No technology

Sitting down as a family with no distractions (TV, radio, phones etc.) creates an opportunity for everyone to bond and interact with one another.

Minimise mess

Adapt the dining room for your toddler. Inevitably there will be food dropped and water spilled so use a messy mat! This will stop you becoming stressed and allow your toddler to enjoy their food without being interrupted mid meal for a clean-up!