Today, people are busier than ever. And instead of eating out every night, most families prefer to eat at home and cook together instead. Family dinners are a wonderful way for parents and children to connect on a more personal level. They can also be a great way to help your child develop essential social skills and habits that will last them the rest of their lives.
Family dinners don’t have to be staid affairs with no room for fun or surprises. Here is how you can make family dinners special.
The Setup is Important
The setup is the first thing you must do before the family dinner starts. Set the table with napkins, forks, knives and spoons for each person. The napkins should be folded to fit in the place settings and easily accessible to each person.
If the table is set with the place setting for each person, you won’t have much space for other activities. You can arrange them to make it easy for everyone to see each other and talk. To maximize the fun, you should consider using large outdoor dining tables.
Use Unique Dishes
Children love playing with food, so make sure you use various plates, bowls, and utensils when cooking at home. This will help your child develop a critical eye to identify the differences between various foods. It will also make them more likely to try new things. Try out a few family dinner recipes so everyone feels included.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions
If your child doesn’t know what something is called or what it’s used for, ask them. If they don’t know how to cook certain foods or how to prepare certain ingredients, teach them. They can learn much from watching you and asking questions about your actions and why.
Give Your Children More Responsibility in the Kitchen
Letting your children help in the kitchen will give them a sense of empowerment and independence that can last a lifetime. This is especially important for younger children who may not have enough experience to cook for themselves yet but want to do so anyway. It will allow them to practice their basic cooking skills without having anyone else’s food taste “wrong” if they mess up even slightly while preparing it themselves.
Make it Fun
If you have children who are not keen on eating, you can make it fun by bringing in entertainment like music, movies and books. You could also let them take turns singing or playing instruments as long as they stick to a comfortable range of pitches and don’t sing too loud or too soft. Family dinners don’t have to be boring.
For a fun family dinner, play games like charades or bingo. It is also a good idea to make up new games every time you get together so your kids won’t get bored of playing the same old ones over and over again. You could also enlist your child’s help in making up some of these games using simple materials like markers or crayons.
Everyone wants a happy and healthy family with plenty of fun moments. Apart from coordinating everyone’s schedules and choosing the perfect activities for your family, family dinners are the glue that bonds you and the other members. As such, you must make them memorable and worthwhile.