Prioritize pleasant meals

Welcome to Day 9 of 30 Days to Waldorf-Inspired Preschool at Home series! (To start at the beginning, just click here!)

Today let’s talk about prioritizing pleasant meal times.

Traditionally, families took time to sit down together for three meals every day. These were times to slow down and get a break as well as time to connect. Modern American families are hard-pressed to do this even once a day, but any effort in this direction is a good thing!

Meals can be a time of:

-- reverence and gratitude (blessing a meal, being grateful for the food and time together) -- relationship-building (laughing and talking together) -- building up great habits (around eating, manners, and listening) -- learning social skills and the art of conversation -- learning so many other skills like setting the table, sweeping, or cutting fruit -- prioritizing relationships over being busy

In other words, meals are important times in the day for preschoolers to learn and connect.

As homeschooling parents, we have a wonderful opportunity to share all our meals together with our children. It’s worth putting some attention on creating lovely mealtime rituals with your preschooler. This is one of those areas where putting in the time and effort every day with your young children will pay huge dividends down the line in the pre-teen and teenage years.

How to prioritize pleasant meals:

1. Try to serve your preschooler meals and snacks at approximately the same time each day. Let these times be anchor points in your daily rhythm.

2. Make an enjoyable ritual out of mealtimes - maybe there are special songs or blessings that you sing, a nicely set table, lighting a candle, or taking time for everyone to share their favorite part of the day.

3. Involve your preschooler in all aspects of meal preparation. Let him learn to set the table, help with snack and meal prep, clear the table, and wash dishes.

4. Leave plenty of time to prepare and eat your meals so the focus is on relationships and good food not on rushing.

What are meal times like in your family?  What do you do to make them special?  Does your preschooler help with cooking or cleaning up?

Looking for the list of all the 30 days to preschool posts?  Click below!