Table manners are crucial skills to be taught to children earlier. These should be developed when they are still young so that the society will accept them when they grow up. If you play boss and employees wherein you dictate your children to do everything you ask to them, it won’t work. Besides telling them what to do, you will need them seeing the etiquette and good manners at the dining table. You will also need to show a good example for them.
Keep in mind that you are not alone in the dining room. Your lovely ones will watch every move that you make in the room. Well, that’s how the children learn. They will mimic the way you behave in the dining room, sit, the way you eat, the way you talk, and so on. They will mimic just about any movement you do. Notice how often your kids talking while eating, or rushing to wash their hand, etc. It is the right time to teach them some manners. Manners must be served for the sake of them.
Depending on your kid’s behaviors, you may want to consider teaching them in some unorthodox ways. But here are 8 table manners to teach your kids.
1. About the Respect
On the table, kids need to know how to respect the other people. It does not hurt to teach them to some words like “thank you”, “please”. These words, although look so simple, will teach them the right way to respond to other people. So rather than saying “This food is bland, I don’t like it!” when they need more salt, they’ll say “Can you pass the salt, please?”.
This lesson can be very useful when your kids do not want to eat some foods at someone else’s house. So rather than saying “This food looks bad”, they can simply say “No, thank you”.
You will teach your kids these words when they are 2 or 3. Please and thank you are powerful words. These can soothe someone else. As mentioned, you should be a good example for your kids. You could start the breakfast off by saying “Please come to the table for breakfast”. When your child wants something, don’t help them until they say “please”, and wait until they say “thank you”.
When your kids are five or six, it is the perfect time to teach them to sit at the table and remain well-behaved for at least 20 minutes. That is actually enough time to finish the breakfast before going to school. There will be the weirdness for the first time since your kids are used to co-sit with you. So you could start by finding the best position for your kids. Assuming that your kids have been growing, you will no longer use a booster seat, but your conventional dining chair. Talk to your kids that it is fun to sit in their own chair.
3. Utensils Uses
Kids love to use fingers to eat their favorite foods. But when they grow up, it is important to teach them how to use a fork. Not to mention they’ll need to know which foods require the uses of utensils. But kids are often distracted. So you could tell your kids that when they are not sure about which utensils to use, they can ask you. Be consistent about what you assign to your kids so that they will never be confused when using utensils. Now they are getting older. Let them know that they will learn it with your company and then they can do it by themselves. Talk to your kids that these rules also work at restaurants.
4. Keep their hands and face clean
It is important to teach your kids about healthy hygiene habit when they are still young. This habit will be conducted by them until they grow up and face the world independently. Always emphasize that coming to the table must be with the clean hands and face. Teach your kids to wash up before and after dinner. Not only that this will keep the healthy hygiene habit and wellness, but also show the respect for a person who cooks the meal, as well as people who sit together in the dining room.
5. BMW Rule
Teach your kids about BMW rule so that they can help you to set the table. The simple rule as such BMW – Bread, Milk, Water looks simple and straightforward, yet very important to implement early. Bread and milk will be on the left, while the water will be on the right. Also, teach them about how to place the fork and knife correctly. For this, you can help them remember the number of letters in the silverware words. For instance, the fork will go left. Left has 4 letters, so does a fork. The knife will go on the right and it has 5 letters.
6. When eating
Teach your kids to wait until everyone is ready to eat. It is important to teach your kids to wait for others so that they will care about the others. When eating, avoid chewing with the mouth open. It is probably daunting for the first time. Kids can’t help to have fun and chew with their mouth, especially if they are eating their favorite foods. But let them know that chewing with their mouth closed is a cardinal rule of table manners. Also, don’t let them stuff their mouth. Teach your kids to take smaller bites instead.
It is free to have a conversation about their school, friends, hobbies, and other interesting topics. At the dinner table, practice having a good conversation with your kids. Teach them that it is important to wait their turn to speak when talking about their subjects. Let them know that interrupting when other people are talking is not polite. Be patient, you will nail it.
8. Pass the salt to me, please
Kids tend to explore things. And when they discover something that they need, they won’t think twice to grab it. When it comes to dinner, they tend to reach the salt in the corner. Let them know that it is not appropriate. Instead, they could ask the table mate to pass the salt to them.
Good table manners do not only show the goodness in your kids but also make them appreciated by other people. And as you could expect, they will get something good in return. They will be loved by many people.
Your JollyBabyClub Team