Please's and Thank you's Go Far, Start Teaching them Early
Article submitted by Kathleen Thomas on behalf of Primrose Educational Day Care Schools
Teaching your children table manners may sound old-fashioned but it will never go out of style. By teaching your kids table manners, you will train them to show respect for other people. This practice involves more than saying “please” and “thank you”, as it is also necessary for your children to develop habits and behaviors that will help them relate to adults and other children in a positive way.
A fantastic way to teach your children etiquette from a very young age is to take the time to sit down and relax with your family during dinner. As your children develop proper manners, they will build more friendships. Below are awesome ways to teach your children good table manners:
1. Start training them at an early age. You can train them to sign key phrases such as “please” and “thank you”, then transition them to speaking these words by the time they are two years old. By the time they are three, they should be able to stay seated at mealtime, as you sit down with them. Show them how to use forks, knives and spoons correctly. As kids love to imitate adults, yours will love to imitate the way you cut your food with a knife and eat your food with a fork or spoon. It is best to practice with plastic silverware and soft foods like bananas. You should also train your kids to set the table and make sure that everyone has a place to sit.
2. Give specific feedback. One of the best ways to teach your kids table manners is to give them specific feedback about their behavior, as this is far more effective than giving generic praise. Instead of saying, “Good job,” you can say, “I’m proud of you for setting the table. You helped each of us eat sooner.”
3. Encourage your children to engage in polite conversation. Show them how to take turns listening, talking and asking questions as the family eats together. Mealtime will become more special as you demonstrate that it is a time for the entire family to bond and have a great conversation while getting nourishment.
4. Set a good example by following your words with the appropriate actions. Your Children will thrive as they watch you to detect behavior clues. If you want your children to eat broccoli because it’s a healthy food choice, you need to let them see you eating it with a smile on your face.
5. Create a routine that is easy for your kids to repeat and remember. You will help your children learn what to expect by doing the things you do at the table with consistency and keeping everything on the table in an orderly fashion. Get into the habit of putting a napkin in your lap when you sit down and waiting until everyone is served before starting to eat.
You have learned ways to teach your children good table manners. These are easy steps they can do at home and elsewhere in order to get others to view them positively.