The Art of Table Setting

Table Setting_1

Today, I had the opportunity to witness a few of our primary community members prepare the tables for lunch. Although they carried out this work flawlessly, it did seem quite challenging. They are required to take one item at a time, carrying it from the cabinet to the table, which can take several minutes. It truly did resemble a form of art, placing each item carefully on the table in the correct order.

What impressed me most was the dialogue that was shared between our two, pre-selected lunch helpers.

“Can you help me tie my apron, please?”

“Here, you lay out the napkins while I do the spoons.”

“We need to get the water from the refrigerator, but I need your help.”

“Would you hand me the napkin?”

I enjoyed hearing these two young people interact and collaborate with one another. It was truly delightful! They found pure joy in the work they were doing, and carried themselves in such a way that they knew this was important and purposeful work.

Not once did I see the guides intervene because it was simply not necessary. She didn’t step in to correct their errors, or straighten a napkin that was slightly offset. The task was carried out in full by the two friends, who relied on one another for help.Tabel Setting_4Setting the table can be defined by many adults as a “chore”, but for a child, it is a purposeful, meaningful, and fulfilling work that stimulates all of their senses. Through this work, they enhance their concentration as they focus on each minor detail, self-control as they learn to carry one item at a time, critical thinking through exploring and manipulating different styles of place setting, collaboration, delegation, and leadership skills, care of environment and care of others, and they develop a healthy self-image because the work is real and necessary. And because of this, we cannot call it a “chore” since it is joyful, purposeful work. Just like an artist carefully and meticulously paints or sculpts his masterpiece, so do our children carefully and meticulously complete their work.

Table Setting_3

They understand that this is important work, and gain self-confidence as they see the outcome of their efforts; a room full of happy children eating and socializing in a well prepared environment.

Table Setting_2

A Conversation After School – Sarah Moudry

The best part of our day as parents, has got to be afternoon pick up. The eager smile that falls upon your child’s face as they see you waiting at the door, and the warm embrace to follow as they jump into your arms for a hug, is such a wonderful experience.

Our first instinct is to ask “How was your day?”, or “What did you do today?”. For young children, this can pose a difficult question, and the answer might not always be what you want to hear. It’s often times hard for them to compile their entire day into a simple answer. However, there are ways that you can engage your child in a conversation, while learning interesting details about their day.

Sarah Moudry, blogger and early childhood family consultant, gives perfect examples of how you can encourage healthy conversation between you and your child at the end of the day:

Happy Reading!

7 Things Every Kid Should Master

It’s been said time and time again; we need to reevaluate the way standardized tests are being conducted in schools, as well as the content within the tests. Are the tests actually measuring the child’s ability to succeed in life … Continue reading