Family Dinner Ideas
Family Dinner Ideas includes:
- Benefits of meal time
- Tips for meal time
- Dinner discussion topics game
Planned Kids Cooking Curriculum
~This post may contain affiliate links and I'll earn a small commission if you shop through them. There is no extra cost to you. This is how we help support our family and continue to bring you amazing content. To learn more see the affiliates disclosure here.~
Family Dinner Ideas
Family meal time is something that often gets forgotten in the
hustle and bustle of daily life. Grabbing something to eat while we
dash around may be convenient once in a while but once you have
gotten into the habit of eating out or snagging a quick bite,
you lose one of the most valuable benefits that parents have
when raising their children; family meal time.
Setting aside a time for at least one meal a day with your family
can help your children to establish a routine and give you time to
get to know your children better. You should turn off the
television, turn off the computer and turn off any video games
during family meal time and let this time be used to feed not only
your bodies but learn about one another and feed the bond between
you and your children. Open communication this way is very important
As they get older your children might not appear to want to sit at
the table and participate in family meal time. If you have instilled
this since early childhood your teens are going to be more receptive
to the idea. If you are starting after your children are teens you
might see a little struggle at first.
Benefits of Family Meal Time
It's one of the great tragedies of modern life that all the
technology which is supposed to make everything easier has in fact,
led to us being busier than ever, with technological devices like
TV, iPods and personal computers making it easier for family members
to "tune out" from the home environment. This article will delve
into why eating together as a family is so important and a few
techniques you can use to help encourage more quality family time in
Keeping Up with News
Having dinner as a family is a great way to keep up with everything
that's going on in the lives of your children and other family
members. This may not be a big issue when your kids are young, but
as they reach the teenage years they will start to take up their own
interests and make new friends through school.
Often they won't mention those things of their own accord, so a
family dinner is a good time to ask what's new in your kids' lives.
This is especially true if you as a parent lead a busy lifestyle.
Teaching Children Lessons
In the past, family dinner time was an opportunity for the older
members of the family to share life lessons with the younger
children. Often teens in particular will try to face the troubles in
their lives on their own rather than talk about it with the family,
missing out on the valuable knowledge and experience of older family
members. Family dinnertime creates a chance for the sharing of that
knowledge, making life's difficulties easier for the younger kids.
Keeping Kids on the Good Path
One of the other benefits of having a time when the whole family
sits down together is that you can instill some important family
values. Often it's a lack of these values that leads teens into
problems with alcohol or drugs. This problem can be curbed by having
regular mealtimes together where you as a parent remind your kids of
the important character qualities that will help them succeed in
life. Children who have routine meal time are less likely to deal
with depression as well!
Be a Role Model
Meal time is a great time for you to be a role model. Healthy
dietary habits are learned by watching others and their eating
habits. If you eat healthy foods and give these as healthy choices
to your children they are going to choose healthy foods as well.
Family Dinner Meals
Often half the battle of getting the whole family together for a
meal is that some family members view it as "boring." In order to
avoid this problem, try changing up the routine with some fun meal
ideas. Cook a lavish feast and arrange the table in the style of a
formal dinner, or have a barbecue in winter time - do whatever it
takes to break the family out of the regular routine.
Certain dishes such as casseroles are great for family dinnertime
because the meal is cooked in one dish. Just set it in the middle of
the table and let each of your family members serve themselves - as
long as they stay at the table to eat.
Make teaching easier with our activities and recipes compiled in one easy to read format.
Family Dinner Ideas
These meal ideas can help you to spend quality time with your family
and teach your children about nutrition.
- Learning to listen to your body and stop eating when you have
reached the satisfied point is also important. Making a child
finish everything they are served, or everything they serve
themselves, can teach them to overeat. This can lead to more
health problems later in life. It is best to teach children to
stop eating once their hunger is satisfied.
- Family meal time is also a great time to introduce new foods
to the whole family. Trying new foods opens up opportunities to
get nutrition from new sources.
- You can designate one night a month to a specific culture and
you can try ethnic foods that way.
- Don't forget children can help you get meals planned and
prepared. This will help them to learn more about cooking and
nutrition. It might take a little more work to have younger
children help you out in the kitchen but the bond you are
cementing as you do so this is worth it.
Dinner Ideas Topic Starters
We've created the questions to get your family dinner conversation
rolling. Print off the pdf game, cut out and take turns answering
and discussing. Enjoy!
Dinner Topic Game
Follow Kids Cooking Activities