I recently recieved this Skip Hop Stay Put Mat to try out. I love how the girl in this photo has such a balanced meal on her mat. My String Bean's meals consist of carbs, carbs, and a bite or two of fruit. She's somewhat of a picky eater.
We've got a really nice wooden high chair for String Bean with a tray that has this groove around it (presumably to keep your little one from knocking food on the floor, but clearly a parent did not design it). We've tried the Gerber Lil Trainer Tableware (plate with a suction cup bottom) and we can't get it to stay on this tray. We tried it in public, too, and found that String Bean is smart enough and strong enough to pull the suction off of the table and throw the plate on the floor. No good.
When I got this mat in the mail, my number one priority was to make sure it stayed securely on String Bean's high chair tray. Check. Our next priority was to make sure the plate was secure enough that she couldn't pull it off on a whim. Check.
This plate has non-skid rubber pads on the bottom so String Bean can't push it away. The plate easily comes off the tray for washing (yes, it is dishwasher safe!), and the silverware sits on the tray to keep from getting accidentally knocked off. Of course, String Bean has no idea what to do with a spoon or fork, so she just picks them up and plays the drums with them. Hey, at least she's entertained!
We really like this tray and would recommend it to you if you're teaching your toddler table manners or you're just trying to sit through a meal without having to pick up your toddler's plate off the floor numerous times. At $20, it is more expensive than Gerbers' or some of the other brands' options, but then again, you get what you pay for! This product is more sturdy and is BPA-free, Phthalate-free and PVC-free. I'm not sure I can say the same for the rest of those guys.