You asked

How can I make it easier for my child to learn table manners?

There are two ways to make it easier for any child to learn something new: set a good example, and make learning fun. If you’re already setting a good example by practicing good table manners, then there are a few other things you can do to make the experience of learning table manners more fun for both of you.

First, try reading books or watching programs on television or DVD that deal with table manners. Another good idea is to have an arts and crafts day, where you make a custom place mat with outlines for your child’s eating utensils. Colour or paint it brightly, then have it laminated. Either use your child’s placemat, or a special chart to chart his or her progress with table manners with gold and other coloured stars.

Making meal times fun and special by buying your child brightly coloured, special utensils and crockery is another incentive for your child to behave, and of course, keeping meal times short and manageable for your preschooler is a must. Over time, even the messiest eater will pick up better table manners if your family uses them, and by the time your child is around six, he or she should be ready for even the poshest dinner party!

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