Wherever you go for lunch or dinner, you are mostly accompanied by your children.
Now if they eat the food properly by putting it on the plate then they become apple of everyone’s eye. Even the parents feel proud. But if they eat shabbily, it brings lot of shame as well.
Just think if you are in a hotel for lunch or dinner with your elders and friends and the eating manners of your children is bad and their manner of talk flippant, what impression will it have on others? If it is good, everyone shall be happy.
Share the eating manners with kids
When it comes to meal manners then apart from children it is necessary for elders too. If the elders maintain good manners while eating and talking, it would influence the children in a very positive manner.
They will follow and copy the manners maintained by their elders. Wherever you are eating, be it over the table or down on the floor, first place the napkin over your lap. The lap should be inside the table. Take food at ease! One morsel at a time and chew it properly even if you are very hungry.
How to take the drinks
Children usually like taking soft drinks with food, especially in the events or at restaurant. Teach them that they should keep taking food along with the sips of cold drinks. They should not drink much of the drink but sip it slowly. If the food stains their lips, they must clean it with napkin. The children must not use hand or tongue to eat the food. If the food on table is away from a child, then they should not try to drag that container towards them. They should request elders to pass on the food to them. They must not miss to thank the elders.
If eating with everyone
If you are taking food in a big group then tell the kids not to get up immediately after their food is over. They should wait till others are done. Getting up in between is a bad habit. Don’t keep dragging the empty plate of food in between. Let it be over lap. Let the napkin be spread over. If it is necessary then get up saying excuse me. If you are at home, then keep the plate in the kitchen. If are at someone else’s home then keep the plate at place where they keep their used containers.
Don’t leave food on plate
Be it elders or children; take food on plate as much is needed. Put vegetables to the plate one by one and don’t put more than two vegetables at a time. Take less quantum of vegetable and if you like it take it on second serving. Sometimes the children leave food on the plate when they don’t enjoy. Teach them they should not do this as it is a sign of bad manner.
Taste a little and then allow the food to come to your plate. On the plate, don’t dump the food else you would not be able to enjoy it. Never cover the food plate with napkin. If the food is being taken by hands, then keep cleaning the fingers in between.
Apart from these civilized habits there are many other things to remember. Like when you are eating at restaurant, if you notice hair in the food then call the waiter immediately and show that to him. If you are at someone’s home on an invitation then keep the hair aside. Don’t make an issue of it else the host may feel embarrassed. If you are at someone’s home or somewhere out then speak politely. Even laugh in limits. Don’t make over noise.
If you need to stop the kids over some point then do it by using loving words. Speak less when eating else the food particles may fall on others. Ask the kid about his choice of food. Their choice should be considered but their undue demands must be rejected.
– Neetu Gupta