If you have a little kid, you probably have some kind of food battle raging in your home. They don’t want to sit in one spot long enough to eat a meal, they don’t want to eat that, or they don’t want to eat anything.
Reddit user u/jlfern figured out a way to get their four-year-old daughter to eat: Teach her to flip a coin.
Heads — she has a bite of broccoli; Tails — she has a bite of quesadilla. It’s the first time she’s finished her dinner in months. I won every flip of the coin.
I would imagine the key here is letting the kid flip the coin themselves. It’s the game that will keep them interested, not the broccoli.
Granted, this tactic will not work with every kid. Or it will work brilliantly once and never again. In that case, here are a few other ideas from commenters on Reddit and Lifehacker staff:
Roll the dice (literally) — whatever number they roll, that’s how many bites they have to take.
Tell them they have to take five more bites and then count along with them. “We count them out loud and just keep counting after 5 until his plate is empty, often counting as high as 15 small bites,” Reddit user u/Koevis says.
Use their age to determine how many more bites they have to take; over time, the number keeps going up.
Line up their bites in a row or a fun shape and count them off as they eat.
Implement the “take at least one bite before you say ‘no thank you’” rule. We used this one with my son when he was younger and although it isn’t effective in getting them to eat a lot of something they don’t like, it did eliminate the battles over trying something new.