You are a busy parent who has just put time into preparing a meal or snack that ended up being thrown on the floor, in your hair and on your nerves. When is the best time to teach children manners? When in their development are they ready to learn this is not the best way to say they don't want to eat that food or to even eat at all?
Teaching children to turn down food politely has helped parents be less frustrated at meal times. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, by age 12 months, children have the ability to do the following:
Test parental responses to their actions during feedings
Test parental responses to their behavior
Pay increasing attention to speech
Respond to simple verbal requests
Respond to “no”
Use simple gestures, such as shaking head for “no”
By 18 months:
Say several single words (15 to 18 months)
Use simple phrases (18 to 24 months)
Follow simple instructions
Parents can start teaching them to say "please" and "no, thank you." When children are a little older, some parents use the "'no, thank you' bite" so children learn early on they are expected to try a food in order to say "no, thank you" to the rest of it.
How are other parents handling this? Please share what works for you in teaching children to turn food down politely or to communicate when they are through.
Rachel Richins is a registered dietitian whose focus is in pediatrics and women's health. Contact her at Live.Nourished@gmail.com
- Beat the heat: 33 free splash pads in Utah
- Condoleezza Rice and Jenny Oaks Baker release...
- UTubers: Vocal Point director, mom dance to...
- Brooke Romney: Why we are taking the fun out...
- Utah farmer turns alfalfa field into the...
- UTubers: Lexi Walker sings 'America the...
- 4 ways to guarantee your kids will have a...
- The U.S. women’s national soccer team...
- When Satan steals your motherhood 87
- Brooke Romney: Why we are taking the... 43
- Behind the rapid shift in public... 26
- Does Shakespeare still have a place in... 10
- LDS musician Alex Boyé thrills... 5
- UTubers: Vocal Point director, mom... 4
- An 'all-American tradition': Fourth of... 3
- Linda & Richard Eyre: Is family the... 2