Poll question: Does your 4/5 year old: - Mothering Forums
View Poll Results: Does your 4/5 year old sit for meals?
Yes 31 86.11%
No 5 13.89%
Voters: 36. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 31 Old 10-30-2011, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sit for meals?

 

What is your "rule" for that?

 

If no, what age did they start sitting for meals?

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#2 of 31 Old 10-30-2011, 05:12 PM
 
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Yes my 5 year old sits for meals, and did at 4 as well. Once she is done she is allowed to clear her plate and leave so she doesn't sit for long, but she does sit. Just this evening she was told that she had to sit with us and the grandparents who were here even though she wasn't hungry and she did so just fine.


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#3 of 31 Old 10-30-2011, 06:15 PM
 
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I'd vote other if it was an option because I don't understand the questions.  Do you mean sit while eating?  Do you mean stay seated until *everyone* is finished? Do you mean not wiggle and talk and sometimes get up and do a dance in the kitchen?  Do you mean sitting without falling out of the chair?

 

(ds does sit down while eating meals, most of the time)

(he does NOT stay until everyone is finished and I wouldn't ask him or anyone else to)

(he does wiggle, talk, dance, sometimes go and get things and bring them back, sometimes ask to be read to, sometimes work on a project while eating)

(he usually falls out of his chair at least once per meal)

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#4 of 31 Old 10-30-2011, 06:23 PM
 
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She just turned 4 and does sit for HER meal...She won't sit for longer than a half hour though..She starts to get ansy..So when she is done with her meal I will excuse her from the table..

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#5 of 31 Old 10-30-2011, 06:45 PM
 
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My kids are squirmy, but can be expected to sit for the meal, both at home and out to eat.

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#6 of 31 Old 10-31-2011, 05:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I just mean sit, eat (not in silence or anything like that) and then get up and play. 


My kids (5 in Dec. and 3 in Jan.) play and eat after being asked repeatedly "Get a bite. Get a bite. Get a bite." because they are playing.  It is driving me crazy that meals take 4x longer than they should.  I know it's all about picking battles but between allergies (keeping safe foods at the table and washing up before playing with toys) and just wasted time and energy, it is making me crazy!

 

I was talking to DH and said the lego's need to be put up before dinner so DS will eat before playing (the are pretty much all he plays with).  He was wondering if that's expecting too much. I said I didn't think it was so that's why I came here to ask :)  

 

Thanks!

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#7 of 31 Old 10-31-2011, 06:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone_kneegrabber View Post

I'd vote other if it was an option because I don't understand the questions.  Do you mean sit while eating?  Do you mean stay seated until *everyone* is finished? Do you mean not wiggle and talk and sometimes get up and do a dance in the kitchen?  Do you mean sitting without falling out of the chair?

 

(ds does sit down while eating meals, most of the time)

(he does NOT stay until everyone is finished and I wouldn't ask him or anyone else to)

(he does wiggle, talk, dance, sometimes go and get things and bring them back, sometimes ask to be read to, sometimes work on a project while eating)

(he usually falls out of his chair at least once per meal)

I voted "no" but this description is basically how it goes here (and made me laugh!).  My almost-7 year old gets up than the 4.5 year old.  I tell them both a few times during the meal (meaning, *their* meal) do sit down, not bring toys to the table, etc. 

 

 

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#8 of 31 Old 10-31-2011, 10:49 AM
 
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She does but she doesn't eat by herself; she has to be fed. If left to eat independently she eats almost nothing.


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#9 of 31 Old 10-31-2011, 12:01 PM
 
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Yes.  My kids have to stay seated while they're eating and they do.  Once they are finished, they can get up, they don't have to wait for everyone else. 

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#10 of 31 Old 10-31-2011, 02:20 PM
 
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Wow.  It surprises me that kids don't sit at the table well.

 

All of mine do, even the 13 month old.  They all have really big appetites, and we don't really snack or drink calorie drinks either, so maybe that changes things. 

 

And, they don't get up and down, and squirm in their chairs or anything.  And they sometimes like to just stay at the table when they are done so they can hear the conversation.  My kids are 6,4,2, and the baby.

 

We don't have a "rule" about either, btw.  It's just what we've always done.  It's just a non issue around here.

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#11 of 31 Old 10-31-2011, 08:11 PM
 
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My dd (4.5) pretty much stays at the table until she's done eating.  Sometimes she clears her plate on her own, sometimes I remind her to.  If she leaves the table I ask her if she's finished eating, if not, she returns to the table; if so, she clears her place and goes on with her day.  It hasn't been much of an issue.

 

Ds is 2, and he actually stays at the table pretty well while he's eating.  Occasionally he wants to wander around with food, but that's usually because dd is done and he wants to play when he sees her playing.  He doesn't actually "sit" because he's decided he's done with the Kinderzeit and instead wants to be on a regular chair -- which means he often stands to comfortably reach his food.

 

I do see that it could become a bit of an issue with him at some point in the future because he is busy and stubborn, and I expect there to be another couple years before he is very easy to reason with.  I want them to eat at the table until they are done because I don't want food mess all over the house; it is working well for us so far; we are pretty relaxed about the whole thing.  (Eat what you want, leave what you don't, I'll help you clear your place and get you a washcloth for your hands and face, etc.)

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#12 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 07:54 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone_kneegrabber View Post

I'd vote other if it was an option because I don't understand the questions.  Do you mean sit while eating?  Do you mean stay seated until *everyone* is finished? Do you mean not wiggle and talk and sometimes get up and do a dance in the kitchen?  Do you mean sitting without falling out of the chair?

 

(ds does sit down while eating meals, most of the time)

(he does NOT stay until everyone is finished and I wouldn't ask him or anyone else to)

(he does wiggle, talk, dance, sometimes go and get things and bring them back, sometimes ask to be read to, sometimes work on a project while eating)

(he usually falls out of his chair at least once per meal)


Same here!  (ds is newly-4)

 


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#13 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 12:16 PM
 
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#14 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 12:23 PM
 
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DS just turned four. He has been sitting for meals for as long as I can remember. We don't allow him to do "nomadic eating" (where he takes food around the house) or drive-by eating, where he is not at the table, but comes back for bites. It's never really been an issue; it's the way we do things in our house.

 

He sits until he is finished, and then asks to be excused. If he has not eaten the amount that he typically eats (i.e., I think he might be hungry later), I very clearly tell him that if he is hungry later, that this (dinner still on his plate) is what he will eat. I will warm it back up for him, and it will be his "snack."  (If he eats a normal-for-him sized dinner and is hungry later, he does get a "snack" of yogurt, applesauce or something similar.)

 

If he can't sit and eat a full meal, it's usually because he has to go to the bathroom, or he is getting sick.


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#15 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 05:09 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone_kneegrabber View Post

I'd vote other if it was an option because I don't understand the questions.  Do you mean sit while eating?  Do you mean stay seated until *everyone* is finished? Do you mean not wiggle and talk and sometimes get up and do a dance in the kitchen?  Do you mean sitting without falling out of the chair?

 

(ds does sit down while eating meals, most of the time)

(he does NOT stay until everyone is finished and I wouldn't ask him or anyone else to)

(he does wiggle, talk, dance, sometimes go and get things and bring them back, sometimes ask to be read to, sometimes work on a project while eating)

(he usually falls out of his chair at least once per meal)


My almost 5 yr old DS does all of the same :)

 


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#16 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 05:21 PM
 
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*sigh*

We've only just managed to get our 8 year old to sit through a whole meal. But, she's kind of...wingy. DS2 isn't too bad, but it's been a bit of work.

 

We don't make much effort with dd2, yet, but she has to keep her food at the table. I have no problem with a grazing approach at her age.


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#17 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 07:17 PM
 
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One of my crew is age 4.5, and she will sit so long as she's eating.  I don't have a "rule" about it, other than "please don't annoy the rest of us", heh.  She's free to go when she's done, provided she's at least tasted the food and takes care of her bowl (i.e. brings it to the sink/rinses it out).  

 

We are not huge on everybody having to sit at the table tho.  We tend to be grazers except for one big meal a day, which may or may not be together at the table. duck.gif


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#18 of 31 Old 11-01-2011, 07:49 PM
 
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Depends what we're having. Is there onions? Does she know? How about bell peppers? How's her mood on the ornery vs cooperative scale at that particular moment? Does it *look* like there is the slightest chance that it *could* be spicy? (regardless of whether or not it actually is) If she approves of the food, she'll sit and eat. If not, she'll be a hellion. The 2yo will sit and eat just fine. He hasn't learned to be picky for the sake of being picky and will try about anything without any prodding. Neither have any issues with being too distracted/energetic to sit at the table. The problem is whether the food is deemed worthy.


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#19 of 31 Old 11-02-2011, 11:23 AM
 
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Nope.  None of my 3 children do it.  They are constantly up and down.  Drives me nuts.  For us- I wonder if our issue is we only have 3 chairs-so one for each child and dh and I eat on the couch(all in the same room right next to the table).  Honestly we have so much trouble just getting them to eat that I don't care if they sit anymore.  I just want them to eat enough.


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#20 of 31 Old 11-03-2011, 12:37 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunnygir1 View Post

My dd (4.5) pretty much stays at the table until she's done eating.  Sometimes she clears her plate on her own, sometimes I remind her to.  If she leaves the table I ask her if she's finished eating, if not, she returns to the table; if so, she clears her place and goes on with her day.  It hasn't been much of an issue.

 



basically this, except DSD just turned 4. eating at the table is totally mandatory. i can't imagine letting her take food anywhere else in the house, or even leave the table between bites: there would be bits of food everywhere! every time she gets a drink or snack, it's strait to the table or i will be wiping/picking it off the couch later, guaranteed.

 

if she claims to not like the dinner, or not be hungry, i say "that's fine, but you need to sit at the table with us because it's dinner time" and she invariably finds her appetite when she understands that she will not be allowed to do something more interesting. some days she will get up to go play with the dog or her toys without asking, and we remind her to excuse herself if she is done (often she is not and comes back to her chair). if she is done, she goes strait to the bathroom and washes the food off her face/hands, brushes her teeth, and goes to her room for pjs/story/bed time. someday it would be nice to have earlier dinners, but with us both working, they end up being around 7:30. 


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#21 of 31 Old 11-03-2011, 04:16 PM
 
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Pff, my kids are 5 and 8 and are constantly up and down, showing tricks, going to the bathroom, hanging off their chairs upside down, singing songs, playing with ustensils, it drives me nuts sometimes. Ds1 is getting a bit better about it, but for ds2 we have to remind him to stay seated and practically talk every bite into his mouth (unless he really really loves it or is really really hungry..)


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#22 of 31 Old 11-04-2011, 02:46 AM
 
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Yes, both my 4yo and 7yo sit and eat. Always have, since they have been eating at the table with us. When they are done with eating they say "tak for mad" which means thanks for the meal. Then they put their dishes in the dishwasher and go play. This is the key here - once their dishes are put away, it is obvious that there is no more food, so they will not be back asking for more. And if they do ask, then we just say you finished, you have to wait for breakfast now. And we stick to this. It's never caused any problems or power struggles. Maybe once or twice they were hungry, but no one died of being a bit hungry one evening. Now if they were sick, or seriously hungry - if they ate nothing and I know they didn't eat their afternoon snack either - then I would offer an apple or banana, but not the meal again. That hasn't happened though, since they were maybe 2 or 3 yo. They know the rules and eat when they are hungry.

 

Our rules are - you can eat whatever of the items at the table you want. You get a bit of everything on your plate and you do not HAVE to eat it, but I would appreciate if you tried a bite because you might like it. You can have seconds, and thirds... of whatever you do like. Food stays in the kitchen, you don't walk to other rooms with it. (exception is popcorn-soda-movie night, which we have once in a while on rainy day or if a child is sick...) Once you have said thanks for the meal and have left the table, then you are done. 

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#23 of 31 Old 11-04-2011, 03:20 AM
 
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Ours does sit for meals.  He tends to be the first one done, and prefers to go off and do his own thing once we're done eating and have gotten to the talking part, lol.  But he does sit with us.

 

 

For us it's just a non issue.  We sit at the table for (almost) every meal.  If there's a baby, and he's awake, he's at the table with us.  Toddlers sit on my lap.  By the time they're 4 and 5 years old, it's a comfortable normal for them, so rarely a problem.

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#24 of 31 Old 11-05-2011, 07:22 AM
 
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My kids are 6.5, almost 5, and 2 (and 5 weeks, but she takes her meals in my arms winky.gif), and they all sit at the table for meals.  If we go out to eat, the littlest one might crawl under the table to get to the other side of the booth or something, but generally sits in her seat for the duration of the meal (definitely not a problem once there is *food* on the table, but sometimes requires a little wrangling before the food arrives). 

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#25 of 31 Old 11-05-2011, 03:21 PM
 
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Yes, the expectation is that you sit at the table (whether it's the kitchen table or the living room table) for meals. When you get up, you're done until snack time. I'm a single mom and dinner doesn't take that long so I'm usually done before they are. There are never toys at the table, so playing isn't an option.

 

My kids are four and seven.

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#26 of 31 Old 11-05-2011, 04:10 PM
 
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My kids do and they don't, depends.  Allergies, yes, have totally changed all my expectations regarding meals and food.  I allow things that I never would have dreamed of in the beginning-- and things that seemed easy to do when I was a nanny minding other people's kids.  Allergies, combined with poor growth and weight gain, can completely rewrite the rules sometimes, at least in our case.  So, yeah, they don't always sit at the table, though I want them to come for a minute, and they never sit perfectly still and eat, at least most of the time.

 

So, do I answer "yes" or "no"?  DD2 is 5 and her older sister sits still a tad bit more.

 

Seems that the girls come to the table and linger more than they used to, so I'll answer "yes".  But that's not the perfect answer by any stretch.

 

 


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#27 of 31 Old 11-06-2011, 06:29 AM
 
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yes, but only with great effort on the part of parents and child.  sometimes I just want to throw up my hands.  


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#28 of 31 Old 11-06-2011, 10:00 PM
 
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Yes, my 4 year old does and so does my 2 year old until they ask to be excused. We allow eating elsewhere in the house on occasion but for proper meals they eat in their chairs. It helps that both like to eat generally and "excused" doesn't mean that you ate what I want you to eat. Even at the park or a party or a picnic or whatever they can usually get settled and eat most of their lunch.

 

And they need to go potty and wash their hands before coming to the table and sometimes after. DD is just 2 but loves being in charge of anything as long as she can make sure it takes 39 steps of behavior.

 

DS was horrified one time when some light snacks were served at a party and the host said was lunch. That wasn't lunch was it mama?

 

 

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#29 of 31 Old 11-06-2011, 10:41 PM
 
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Yes, she sits for meals. Normally we expect her to eat, and when she's done, put her plate in the sink. Then she can go back to playing. I don't expect her to sit longer than that unless we're having a meal with family, like Thanksgiving. Then I expect her to sit for a prayer, etc.

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#30 of 31 Old 11-07-2011, 04:32 AM
 
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My just turned 5 year old is great about sitting during meals. She asks to be excused before getting up and generally has great table manners....

However, my son at 5... was TERRIBLE about sitting at the table. Still is. He drives me nuts with his table manners. I have tried for 8 years to get this kid to have decent table manners and I find myself quite often frustrated with him at the table. Different personalities, I guess.

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