Mealtime Notions, LLC was created by Marsha Dunn Klein, MEd, OTR/L to provide mealtime support for parents and professionals who feed infants and young children with special feeding challenges. Mealtime Notions offers valuable resources such as inspirational parent stories and mealtime tips to help you meet your feeding challenges. In addition, Mealtime Notions offers books, DVDs and other specialized products to support mealtimes. The therapy and consultation aspect of Mealtime Notions is now provided by Marsha’s therapy group: Mealtime Connections, LLC. For more information about Mealtime Connections, LLC, visit mealtimeconnections.com.
Our philosophy is that feeding is, first and foremost, a special relationship between the child and the feeder. That trusting feeding relationship must be nurtured at mealtimes and in all mealtime helping strategies. We use and teach the “Get Permission© Approach ” to all mealtime interactions. We believe it is the adult’s job to offer mealtime opportunities and the child’s job to communicate whether the interaction is enjoyable. We look for a “positive tilt” in the mealtime interaction where the adult and child lean towards each other physically or emotionally during the meal.
The child can indicate acceptance and readiness for the mealtime experience by opening the mouth, reaching or leaning towards the food. We avoid creating situations that can be described as a “negative tilt” where the adult is leaning towards the child and offering, but the child is pulling away, pushing away, crying and trying to leave the mealtime situation. To keep the tilt positive, we need to start from a point of trust, start with food tastes and textures and stretch confidence and enjoyment from there.
The children we serve through workshops and products have difficulties coordinating the process of sucking, swallowing and breathing, handling the sensory aspects of mealtimes, and have a hard time getting in enough calories to grow. Many of them need supplemental tube feeding to help with nutrition, metabolic, sensory and experiential challenges they have encountered. We provide educational opportunities with workshops, therapy consultation and shared information, as well as favorite mealtime resources and materials.
- To create positive mealtimes and feeding relationships while nourishing all mealtime participants
- To understand mealtimes from the perspective of the child and family
- To identify and create strategies for treatment of the medical, oral motor, sensory, emotional and environmental challenges that affect feeding
- To help children master mealtime skills with confidence and enjoyment and the internal motivation to eat enough to grow well
- To look past the mouth and into the bigger picture of mealtime
- To support parents in their roles as “providers of nourishment” for their child