Dinner time

Jessica - posted on 07/14/2009 ( 9 moms have responded )

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I'm having trouble with my 6 yr old daughter's behavior at the dinner table. I work all day, pick her up from my mom, make dinner, and our family eats at the table together. My daughter is excited when she gets home, can't keep her butt in her chair, ends up with food on the floor, hums, sings through dinner, and usually has a plate full of food when everyone else is done. It is very irritating to eat with her and I'm embarassed to take her to other peoples houses to eat. I've tried taking walks before dinner to get her energy out but she still is out of control at the dinner table. I've sent her to her room and told her to come back when she's calm but I can't really do this when we're eating out or at someone elses house. Any ideas?

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Jessica - posted on 07/14/2009

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At my house if they can't behave and act politely at the dinner table then they leave and they don't get to come back. When you're eating out you may have to leave to get across to her that if you can't behave in a respectful manner you don't get to participate in the evening anymore. At someone elses house the same concept applies. I think the best way to get her to behave is going to be consistency and let her know ahead of time that certain behavior will not be tolerated and if she can't behave then you will leave or there will be other consequences...earlier bedtime, no TV, no friends. Stay calm and make a decision to do something before you get angry the effectivness is much greater. Hope this helps.

Bev - posted on 07/14/2009

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Well then, she's obviously testing you. I would suggest you tell her she will have to eat by herself until her behavior changes. Let her eat by herself in another room, explain why you are doing it, and then do it. After a few times of doing this, she should then realize that her acting out is going to mean she eats alone. I wouldn't send her to her room to eat either. She can sit in a room where's there's no TV or computer. (Geez-a-loo, I sound so stern) but it's what she needs. Kids do want the discipline. Once she sees you will not tolerate her behavior - it will change, but it may take some time, or a few tries. Again, good luck.

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Usually it's my three year old kicking her legs and jumping out of her chair and her 6 year old brother is quiet! Maybe it's a girl thing! When I see that she is hyper (which happens a couple times a week) I try and do things to take her down a couple notches. One thing doesn't work all the time (at least for me) but a couple things that I've found that do work is reading her a couple of books so that she can sit in one spot and focus for awhile. Sometimes I give her a nice warm bath (that always works best, but sometimes it is not convenient) or letting her go in the backyard and play tag with her brother for a half hour/45 mins so that when she comes in she is tired and ready to sit down and rest a bit. Hope these suggestions help! :)

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Ashley - posted on 07/14/2009

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Quoting Jessica:



Quoting Ashley:

What a wonderful child. I wish we all could be so relaxed and full of excitement about life. It sounds like a tea party is in order! Make a special day for you and her. Dress up, break out the good china and linnens make tea sandwiches (use cookie cutters) and show her also how to properly set a table. To her, this will be fun being a "grown up" and for you, this is a chance to teach her how to be a lady. Tell her it's practice and if she gets it down, you will have a tea party some afternoon where she can invite frinds to join her! Good luck!






This is an excellent idea!!!  My daughter is having a tea party Thiursday and I actually did't know what I was ging to do.





If the weather is great like it is here....set the table with pretty table cloths. Check the thrift stores for mis matched tea pots and let your daughter fill them with flowers for her 'guests' to bring home. Tea sandwiches are fun and there are lots of recipies. Petit fours are also fun to make and eat. I buy the chocolate pound cake and cut it into cubes and just microwave icing till its thin enough to dip them in. Instead of tea, you can use hot apple cider or caffein free tea, juice, hot cocoa, anything. Make sure you set the table the proper way and let her help you so she knows how too. She can make place cards too if she wants. For the guests, somewhere else in the yard or house, have a bunch of "dress up" items...heels,scarves,hats,ribbons, costume jewelry etc. or buy cheap hats and let the girls decorate them themselves with artificial flowers and ribbon. Sooooooo many things you can do to have fun!

Jessica - posted on 07/14/2009

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Quoting Ashley:

What a wonderful child. I wish we all could be so relaxed and full of excitement about life. It sounds like a tea party is in order! Make a special day for you and her. Dress up, break out the good china and linnens make tea sandwiches (use cookie cutters) and show her also how to properly set a table. To her, this will be fun being a "grown up" and for you, this is a chance to teach her how to be a lady. Tell her it's practice and if she gets it down, you will have a tea party some afternoon where she can invite frinds to join her! Good luck!



This is an excellent idea!!!  My daughter is having a tea party Thiursday and I actually did't know what I was ging to do.

Abby - posted on 07/14/2009

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ashley what a lovely idea!

i think it's a fab idea! and def worth a try! she wants some time with mummy and mummy alone, so if u do that, she'lll feel very grown up!

Ashley - posted on 07/14/2009

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What a wonderful child. I wish we all could be so relaxed and full of excitement about life. It sounds like a tea party is in order! Make a special day for you and her. Dress up, break out the good china and linnens make tea sandwiches (use cookie cutters) and show her also how to properly set a table. To her, this will be fun being a "grown up" and for you, this is a chance to teach her how to be a lady. Tell her it's practice and if she gets it down, you will have a tea party some afternoon where she can invite frinds to join her! Good luck!

Jessica - posted on 07/14/2009

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Quoting Bev:

Is she like this just at dinner time? Does she calm down after you send her to her room? Has she said why she acts that way at the table? Sorry for the questions, but it may help figure out what's going on. Is she acting out, is she vying for your attention, so it's not focused on her siblings (if any)? If she is like this only at the dinner table - then I would guess she does it to get the "attention"... I'm sorry I couldn't be of more help, but with three grown children, I have found that most times, it's to get attention. And they don't care what kind of attention it is. Good luck to you.



She does it more than just dinner time. She's an only child. It is just me, her, and my boyfriend. I make sure to keep her included in conversation at the table and ask her about her day but she seems to want mine and his attention all of the time and doesn't like it when it's not all focused on her. So if he and I try to talk about something she hums or sings really loud so that we can't and we both end up frustrated and angry by the time we get done eating with her.

Bev - posted on 07/14/2009

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Is she like this just at dinner time? Does she calm down after you send her to her room? Has she said why she acts that way at the table? Sorry for the questions, but it may help figure out what's going on. Is she acting out, is she vying for your attention, so it's not focused on her siblings (if any)? If she is like this only at the dinner table - then I would guess she does it to get the "attention"... I'm sorry I couldn't be of more help, but with three grown children, I have found that most times, it's to get attention. And they don't care what kind of attention it is. Good luck to you.

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