“Hot? Hot?”

I was reading about early childhood development and how by the age of 18 months, children should be able to differentiate “hot” vs. “cold.” But I suppose that’s really only going to be the case if your child is actually exposed to something hot or cold and can compare and contrast the two. Usually, we serve Kaia’s food lukewarm in case it may be too hot for her to handle. But a couple months ago, I thought I would warm it a few extra seconds longer just to have her exposed to warmer foods. It went a little something like this:

I put the slightly warmer food in front of her, and I said, “Kaia, this is hot. Be careful. Wait a bit.”

She touched it and then flinched, realizing it was a higher temperature than she’s used to touching. I said, “Hot! Hot!” a couple more times, and then she realized she had to wait to allow the food to cool before touching and trying to eat it again.

Ever since then, she knows that when we warn her that food is hot, she has to wait to let it cool. Sometimes, she will hesitate to even touch the food when we put it in front of her, first having a quizzical look on her face and asking us, “Hot? Hot?” before she proceeds to dig in. My baby is learning by leaps and bounds.

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