“The hardest job kids face today is learning good manners without seeing any.” –Fred Astaire
Last Saturday, I taught about 8th grade cotillion kids dining etiquette. I always worry that they’ll be bored or won’t care about what’s proper when it comes to eating with others. Of course, not every kid can be in cotillion…so what’s a parent to do? Easy. “Google it.”
Here’s what Emily Post listed as the “top table manners” very kid should:
- Come to the table with clean hands and face.
- Put your napkin on your lap.
- Start eating when everyone else does—or when given the okay to start.
- Stay seated and sit up straight.
- Keep elbows (and other body parts!) off the table while eating.
- Chew with your mouth closed and don’t talk until you’ve swallowed.
- Don’t make bad comments about the food.
- Say “Please pass the…” instead of reaching.
- Chat with everyone at the table.
- Don’t make rude noises like burping or slurping.
- Ask to be excused when finished.
- Thank your host or whoever prepared the meal.
- Offer to help clear the table.