Teaching Your Kids Proper Manners When Eating Out
No one sets out to create little monsters, and yet, we’re all very familiar with tantrum-throwing, food-flinging kids. How does this happen? All too often, it’s simply a case of missed teaching opportunities. For example, every time you eat out with your children, you are given the perfect opportunity to teach them proper manners. And with each meal out, your child gets a chance to practice. Here’s how to take full advantage of those precious moments!
Let Them Order for Themselves
One important skill for kids to learn early on is how to talk to adults. By letting your kids order for themselves, you allow them to practice. Allow them time to decide what they want before they order. They might even want to practice with you first. Then, instruct them to look their server in the eye and speak loudly and clearly. Remind them to say please and thank you, and to smile. It may take a few tries before they can do this confidently, but it’s all about the practice. Be sure to praise them for the things they did well.
Teach Proper Etiquette
You shouldn’t be condemned to a life of only fast food simply because you’re a parent. Nice restaurants are the perfect place to teach etiquette. Your kids will learn and have an enjoyable time if you can make it fun. Pretend that you’re at a fancy dinner party and that everyone must be on their absolute best behavior. Teach them which utensils are for what, where to put their napkin, and where not to put their elbows! Most importantly, remind your kids to take small bites, eat slowly, and chew with their mouths closed.
Remember the Most Important Rule – Respect
The first rule of good manners is respect. When your kids master that one, everything else falls into place. Respecting others involves treating them kindly, showing gratitude, including everyone in the conversation, and caring for other people’s property. A good general rule to teach your children is that no one should ever do anything that will make anyone else feel uncomfortable.
For parents, teaching opportunities don’t usually just happen. You have to be proactive and make them happen. And the best ways to teach are through real-life experiences. Everyone benefits when your kids master good manners.
One more thing to remember: kids are all eyes and ears when it comes to learning from your behavior. When you aren’t happy with someone, they’re watching to see how you will react. Click here to learn the best response for when you aren’t satisfied with your order. Then, check out our app to find out where your favorite food trucks are located today!