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Table Manners for Kids

Children must be aware of the primary manners at home or eating out. They learn everything from their surroundings. So learning these table manners for kids is a never-ending process that should begin in their formative years. Table manners must be a routine in every home to see and learn them at a young age. Basic manners like saying please and thank you, sitting properly, and waiting for everyone to be served are accessible for a child to observe and follow. So try to explain to your child why table manners are essential. Let them know why some things are done in a specific way and what is right and wrong. They are also supposed to behave and be quiet when having their food.

Why should children learn table manners?

Children are not born with manners. Manners must be taught in them over time. They love to make playtime out of every situation, and you can’t blame them as it is the age to have them. But once you take the child out to a family dinner, a restaurant, or other social gathering, you suddenly feel embarrassed at what a mess or ruckus your child causes. Teaching table manners and social etiquette can stand them in good stead for the rest of their lives. You are showing them how to conduct themselves in public by teaching them good manners. They learn to appreciate the food served to them and acknowledge the efforts to prepare it. They will also learn to respect the food they are lucky to get. When the children learn table manners, they will impress others and not offend anyone in any social setting.

Age at which the children must be taught manners to children

Starting teaching manners at a tender age is quite good. Children learn through observation, so once the child transitions from the toddler meal chair to the table, between 18 months and three years, start with a few simple ones, such as chewing with your mouth closed or don’t play with food. As the child grows, the parent must increase the intensity of the teaching, like helping around meal times and clearing your plates. Gradually they can learn formal table manners like holding a fork and a knife or how to lay the table for various occasions. There is no fixed age for learning table manners. Learning is a continuous process, so begin teaching your child basic good manners at the youngest age possible through examples and slowly move to dinner-table rules.

The basic table manners children need to learn and follow are:

  • Wash your hands before meals.
  • Keep the napkin on your lap.
  • Wait for everyone.
  • Do not pick food.
  • Do not play with food.
  • Do not talk with food in your mouth.
  • Chew silently.
  • Converse with everyone at the table.
  • Ask for the food to be passed.
  • Do not dip from the same bowl.

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