Transitioning a Toddler to a cup

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  • Use plastic cups small enough to be grasped by small hands, with easy grips and a weighted bottom to keep from tipping.
  • Don’t allow unlimited access to beverages or put her in bed with drinks. This helps avoid tooth decay.

At around 12 months, your Toddler is ready to drink from an open cup, or even use a cup with a straw.

What you might notice during practice

  • Your Toddler may have learned to grasp a cup much better, and is able to bring the cup to the mouth more easily.
  • Spilling will still happen at all three steps of drinking – bringing the cup to her mouth, drinking and taking the cup away from the mouth. Be patient and allow your child plenty of practice.
  • She might drop or throw her cup away once she’s done drinking from it.

Cup do's and don’ts

Do fill her cup full, but make sure to use small, toddler-sized cups. This allows for easier independent training and she won’t have to tip the cup as much to drink.
Do choose plastic, easy-grip cups.
Do use cups that hold 4 - 6 ounces or about 1/2 cup. This helps teach your toddler beverage portions that are appropriate for their age and size.
Don’t let her carry the cup everywhere she goes.
Don’t put her to bed with the cup or allow unlimited access throughout the day, to avoid her drinking too much or getting cavities.

Remember, every child develops differently, so don’t worry if your Toddler doesn’t show all of these signs yet. With practice, she’ll get better with each try.
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