Campbell Fiver Family Network

Tips for establishing Family Meal Time into Your Home

Use these tips for establishing a family meal in your home. 

Prepare for Adversity

While small children may not care, your teens may give you a little opposition about establishing family dinnertime.  Know what you will say when kids complain about this interruption in their lives. Be positive but firm. 

Be Patient

Do not expect miracles to occur overnight.  Make your family dinner time a journey into discovering who you are as a family. Allow everyone to be himself or herself, whoever that may be. 

Encourage Manners

Teach kids dinner table manners like how to use their silverware and how to pass food around the table. Having dinner manners will save your family from embarrassment later in life. 


Use a chalkboard in your dining room or kitchen to remind everyone about dinner night. Make it fun and get kids excited about dinner by giving sneak peeks about the menu. Give regular meals funny names and give yourself or the cook a funny chef name. 

Kid Chefs

Allow kids to help with the cooking on family dinner night.  Kids can toss salads, cut cucumbers, set the table and pour drinks.  Ask kids what foods they would like to cook or would like you to cook. Record your favourite recipes together. 

Helping in the kitchen can set lifelong habits.  Children might like to try foods they help prepare and it’s a chance to develop skills and language while learning about food.

Campbell Fiver Family Network