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We recently noticed that our 4 month old LO likes to sit on our lap at the table. We talked about it with some friends and they confirm it, their LOs also liked that. My wife recalls reading a blog entry which also said something like this.

Do you have similar experiences? Why do you think infants like to sit at a table?

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Probably because everyone else is sitting at the table. Or because it's better than lying down and staring at a ceiling :) Or even there are usually things in reach at the table! –  Swati Mar 11 at 18:11
    
Well, not quite. She enjoys it even if she's alone with one parent. Interesting things - maybe. –  Dariusz Mar 11 at 18:32
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Baby are programmed to copy everything from adults, thats how they learn. If you stop sitting at a table, your baby probably won't like to sit at a table anymore... –  daefu Mar 12 at 12:38
    
What is a "LO"? –  Robert Mar 12 at 22:50
    
@Robert Little One :) –  Dariusz Mar 13 at 5:57

2 Answers 2

Several reasons.

  • Social - they like participating in the meal as everyone else does.
  • Comfort - sitting on your lap is very comfortable, and on top of that is essentially snuggling, which is very natural and enjoyable for the infant.
  • Food - even at 4 months infants are often interested in a theoretical sense in solid food, since Mommy/Daddy/Big Sibling(s) if present spend so much time with it. I suspect this is why my younger son started eating finger food from the table absurdly early - before 5 months, before he had any teeth - because he saw big brother eating it, and wanted 'in'. Food also smells good, and at the table is much more interesting smell-wise than away.

We always had our babies at the table in highchairs as soon as they could hold their heads up and use a highchair; while that's not quite as nice as sitting in mommy's lap, it does let mommy eat, and fulfills some of the above.

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Another reason: a higher vantage point than they're used to. It's hard for us to realize how limited kiddo's perspective can be from down low. Sitting on our laps puts them up at a similar eye level to us that's still a notable novelty. My bored son can suddenly find his unchange environment enthralling for another five minutes just by virtue of being lifted up onto my lap.

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