Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Back to School Countdown # 21: Family Dinners

As a child I can remember so many wonderful discussions around the dinner table.  We would discuss the events of the day, our disappointments, and then listen to the stories of our parents’ lives. 

Every night was different.  Some nights there was fighting among siblings and sometimes there was discussing how to help each other, but either way we were together and we were talking.  When you are trying to decide the rituals most important in your life remember family dinners are a great way to implement a good ritual that has multiple benefits:

·         More meal time at home was the single strongest predictor of better achievement scores and few behavioral problems

·         Family meals generate the largest amount of family talk and sophisticated word usage

·         There is a strong correlation between child vocabulary development and mealtime conversations

Research on Family Meals and Children’s Well Being- 2006, William J. Doherty, PHD

It is so difficult to make the transition of summer to school.  As a parent you are ready for the structure, but not the stress.  Implementing small rituals in your family’s routine will help you and your children adjust to the schedule of school.

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