One of the areas where my kids struggle and that also drives me crazy is their manners, especially at the table. When the kids were born, I made a commitment that we would sit down at the table every night we were home and eat as a family. It was important to me that we had that time together and I thought it would be important to the kids. What I didn’t realize is how crazy it is when you have one child that has sensory issues and often refuses to eat and another one that is constantly playing while at the table, sometimes even throwing food.
I know what you might be thinking – how in the heck did this area get so far out of control where food is flying across the table? Honestly, I don’t know. I think part of it started with my daughter and her sensory issues. She has a huge problem with food and textures. To this day, she still won’t eat any vegetables what so ever. At least now, she will leave them on her plate and just say “no thank you”. In the past, when I put something on her plate that she found “offensive”, the entire plate went slinging across the table and on to the floor.
I could think that my son now throws things at times because he saw his sister do it so much, but I think it is more to do with getting attention than anything. Even if the attention he gets is negative. For him, I have tried to take his plate away, warn him, make him leave the table without eating, etc. All of things with him have really failed. He is my one that doesn’t care if he eats and doesn’t eat a lot to begin with.
The good thing is that the kids act MUCH better when they are out in public and when they are at their grandparents house. They even act better at school. Now, to get them to act better at home around my table. So the next several days are going to be working on manners and also working on dinner time so that I can stop being a short order cook each night. More on the second part tomorrow.
To work on the manners aspect, I found a book that I ordered from Amazon. It is called “Manners at the Table (Way to Be)” by Carrie Finn. I discovered the book through another blog post that I read on food issues called “How I got my kids to eat their vegetables” over at livingwellspendingless.com. I am going to work with the kids through the book and see if I can improve their table manners this week. I will also be referencing this article while working on ending my stint as a short order cook in the evenings.
How do you work on manners at your house and with your children? Leave a comment below and share your best advice.