Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

spoon-feed (someone)

1. Literally, to insert food into another person's mouth. The nurses had to spoon-feed my mother after her stroke. No, my daughter is off the bottle now—we're spoon-feeding her.
2. By extension, to help someone excessively (usually to the recipient's detriment). Her students are lazy because she always spoon-feeds them the answers. The actress got so flustered in front of the camera that we had to spoon-feed her the lines. How unprofessional!
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

spoon-feed someone

Fig. to treat someone with too much care or help; to teach someone with methods that are too easy and do not stimulate the learner to independent thinking. The teacher spoon-feeds the students by dictating notes on the novel instead of getting the children to read the books. You mustn't spoon-feed the new recruits by telling them what to do all the time. They must use their initiative.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
A fellow diner told a US magazine: "[Justin] tried to spoon-feed Jen some of his pasta in a creamy white sauce.
"In this country, there's a cultural problem with maths and people think you need to spoon-feed it to kids.
'Don't spoon-feed people', he explained, 'let's give them something to chew on'.
Michael said: ``I sat over my dad trying to spoon-feed him sugar and water,after a while he started to open his eyes.''
She said he got angry as her mother tried to spoon-feed her the porridge last year, and shouted at her that she would be late for school.
Fronted by Geordieland's favourite sons Ant 'n' Dec, whose offerings of late seemingly have the same safe baby formula to spoon-feed the complacent and thoroughly bored.