August 31, 2009

Monday Manners for 8/31/09

"Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use."
~ Emily Post

I ran across this guide to table manners for children four to seven years old. I can see I have a little bit of of work to do with my kids.
What you can expect…
Sit at the table with family
Help set and clear the table (with assistance)
Participate in table conversation
Use table utensils
Serve and pass dishes
Chew with the mouth closed

The relevant manners…
Asks to be excused
Is quiet during grace
Participates in conversation during the meal
Uses utensils and napkin
Stays at the table until done
Sits up (doesn’t drape over the table)
Chews with mouth closed
Doesn’t talk with mouth full

What a parent can do…
Be patient
Have meals together as a family (good for family and a great opportunity for kids to learn and practice table manners)
Encourage good posture at the table
Pick 3 most important table rules or guidelines and focus on those
Practice at home for meals away from home


  1. Oh, we've got alot of work to do as well. LOL

    Gavin doesn't even like to sit at the table throughout the entire meal. As soon as he gone, he dashes away. That is fine at home, but a problem when we go out to eat. He whines, "Can we go HOME now?"

    I think if we enforce asking him to excuse himself at home, that might be a step in the right direction. Hmmm...

  2. What?! No heartfelt HALLELUJAHs!!! during grace?

  3. Wendy- Oh mine don't sit at the table for the whole meal either, unless we are at a restaurant. But we don't eat many meals together as a family either. I really need to work on getting some help for meals because I never get a chance to sit down and eat. It's up and down getting things, cleaning up spills, clearing away the mess. And B is only home for breakfast so it's just me and the kids.

    Rob- Hah! No, no grace here, but we have been eating where it's done and the kids have been quiet so far.

  4. Of course we have work to do, too!

    I've been thinking of starting a tradition: at the beginning of the meal, we stop everything and each of us shares one thing that he or she is grateful for. Not thanking God, just being thankful. I think it would be a good exercise.

    Also, we try to enforce "May I please get down" but I tend to forget.