4 Tips for Teaching Table Manners to Kids

These simple suggestions will help your child master mealtime manners.




To an adult, table manners are almost automatic — as simple as chewing and swallowing. To a young child, behaving at mealtime involves learning a set of skills. These tips will help you teach manners to your little one:

Teach manners at the table by role-playing during a tea party or while playing "restaurant." These games double as lessons and practice sessions.

  1. Keep rules positive and simple to help teach matter to your child: We sit. We eat with our forks.
  2. Reinforce your rules during mealtime. Hand him his fork and napkin, and remind him to use them.
  3. Set a good example. Demonstrate the manners you'd like to see your child use, and he'll follow in your footsteps.
  4. For an irreverent way to teach manners, get silly and practice bad manners. Invite your child to point out what you're doing wrong and then do it the right way.
Self Control
Social & Emotional Skills
Following Directions
Age 5
Age 4
Age 3
Early Social Skills
Manners and Conduct