All dinners are not created equal. This fact has led to many a time of stress and horror at our house. So, of course I have begun to research the topic furiously, and came upon a couple of great articles. What better place to find an article like this than on a website called “Dinnertime, a Love Story” You can find it here: http://www.dinneralovestory.com/r-o-d/ They had a great set of Dinnertime Rules that I am going to adopt, adapt, and administer.
My kids love any type of “order” that I try and establish in the house- So I have created this printable version of their list of rules, and I am going to post them by the table as a reminder.
1. Everyone eats together. This one will be a challenge since Gabe works really late some nights, but, with or without him, we will eat at 6:00pm every night M-F (at least). No one gets to skip. The whole point is bonding, and nourishing out lives and family.
2. The table is a safe place. This is something we need to work on. But establishing the dinner table as a place where they know all talk is positive, no disciplining takes place there (in that setting), no fighting, no criticisms (no matter how “constructive” in their intent etc.
3. No Distractions. Adults too. No TV, No Phones, No Newspapers etc. This is quality face-time.
4. Say Please and Thank You. Pass the peas…please. Thank you for passing the peas.
5. All Fours on the Floor. (Chair)
6. Try a Bit of Everything. Don’t have to eat all of it. But at least try it.
7. Use an inside voice.
8. Play “High and Low”. Go around the table and ask each person to say what their low point of the day was, and their high point. And listen when they are speaking.
9. Only COMPLIMENTS to the chef. Get it? aka. No negative comments about the food.
10. Everyone helps clean up. At our house this means everyone clears their own place setting. And helps clear serving utensils etc. Mine are still a bit too young to do dishes etc.
We’ll see how it goes…