A beaker, I’ve discovered, is one of the (many) things toddlers have views about. If it’s too big, too slow flowing, too pink, too anything, they simply won’t drink out of it.
It will be thrown on the floor in disgust or they will haughtily turn their head away from it, refusing to engage on any level. I have a drawer in my kitchen filled with abandoned beakers and their various body parts: lids, filters, spouts etc.
These five, however, seem to have passed the test and are still in permanent circulation in our household.
Tommee Tippee essential first cup
An absolute favourite. The baby loves it – he manages to gulp water from it by himself – and the toddler has never once complained about it. No filter, easy to clean, easy to put together, and the flip over spout means it doesn’t spill when you shove it in your bag. Unless of course you haven’t put the lid on properly. Cheap as chips, too. 4 months plus, £1.01, Waitrose.com
OXO Tot sippy cup
The baby likes this one because it’s got a soft spout. The toddler likes the colour and the chunky handles. The sturdy cap keeps the spout clean and prevents leaks. Expensive… but a great, multipurpose beaker – just make sure you don’t lose any of the pieces. From around 6 months, £10.50, Johnlewis.com
Lansinoh mOmma round-bottomed beaker
Before I got hold of this super-chic looking beaker, Hector wouldn’t even consider drinking his bedtime milk from anything other than a bottle. But he adored this round goblet from day one – probably because it’s a bit of a cheat, in that the soft silicone teat is very like that of a bottle. It’s brilliant though: easy to hold, spill-proof, and very hygenic and easy to clean. BPA free. The only downside is that Hector loves it so much he gnaws through the spout so we’ve had to buy a few replacements. 6 months plus. £9,65, Amazon.co.uk
Nuby monster cup
Hideous to look at (unless you’re a child) but a complete winner in all other respects. The spout is built into the lid and has no extra filter or valve, so it’s very easy to keep clean. It’s also leak resistant and BPA free. Warning: These beakers go down very, very well with children. Watch yours doesn’t get swiped by one of your child’s green-eyed friends. 6 months plus. £13.36, amazon.co.uk
Tommee Tippee easy drink cup
A souped up version of the essential first cup, with removable handles and flip over lid which Hector enjoys operating himself. It’s a bit of a hassle to clean as there are two parts to the filter but it’s made of wonderfully soft plastic and has a particularly soft spout – great when they’re teething. It’s BPA free and dishwasher, microwave and steriliser safe. 7 – 12 months. £5.09, Ocado.com