When my kids were little, dinner times were sometimes trying. They were often tired from a long day along with being hungry: resulting in some “yucks”, “wiping hands on shirts, and the like . My kids have always learned much better through play rather than “lecture” or “nagging” (and my hubby loves to play) so I was in search of some fun way to tackle this problem. So, here’s a game our family did with my two older kids when they were 4 and 6years old.
Switch Seats Night
Okay, I doubt if your family has “official” assigned seats but everyone probably sits in the same seat. So, what you are going to do is have a Switch Seats Night. Here are the “rules”.
1. You must have the same number of adults and kids.
2. No one can sit in their usual dining seat.
3. Adults switch seats with kids and visa versa…no kids switching with kids nor adults switching with adults.
4. You must act like the person whose seat you are sitting in for the entire meal.
It’s amazing how much fun this is and also just how much you will learn about yourself along with getting the point across to your kids.
My older son used to live on air when he was little which made him incredibly picky. (For those of you with picky eaters, he’s now 6’2″ and will eat anything and everything so don’t fret). Anyway, I’ll never forget one switch seat night when he and my husband switched seats. The dialogue went something like
Dad: In a very animated and exaggerated voice, “Ew, Yuck!! I’m not going to eat this! It looks funny! I don’t like it! It’s yucky! The food is touching!”
3 year old Son: In a very caring yet firm voice, while wagging his finger, “You can’t say yuck until you try it. You may like it if you try it”
I had the hardest time trying not to laugh. This went on throughout the entire dinner….and my picky son actually ate food he normally said was yucky to show his dad that if he tried his food he might like it!
Try it….you’ll have fun and you just might learn something about yourself as well!