Monday, September 12, 2011

Practical Life: Manners

We have had a day of the week for each child for several years now.  We call it L-day or D-day or E-day. On that day that child gets to go into the car first and a couple other things, but also they have some extra responsibilities on that day like emptying the dishwasher and doing a bathroom swish-and-swipe (which they love, believe it or not!)

Well, I decided L-day (or whomever) would dovetail well with some Montessori lessons called "Practical Life."

In collection we've been going over some basic everyday hygiene practices and life skills:
how to properly cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, how to blow your nose and throw that tissue away, how to ask to be excused, how to ask for something to be passed politely (and how to respond). We also practiced how to greet someone you've never met, how to shake hands, how to introduce someone, and how to pass by someone. The kids really got into re-enacting these situations.

Monday was D's day and I added in a new responsibility -- that of snack host/hostess.  We went over proper etiquette in setting the table, serving others and so forth.

In the morning before our school session began, DD mixed together some cookie dough.  Partway through our work session she prepared our snack while LD was reading and DD was working on a beading.

She baked a tray of cookies (we froze the rest on a cookie tray for another day). She also cut up the fruit and put it on a plate.

She set the table properly.

Then she invited everyone to wash hands and come have a snack.

DD acted as hostess, "Would you like some fruit?" "Would you like a cookie?"

The kids did well saying 'thank you' and 'you're welcome.'

Anyway, this is probably all stuff you do in your home on a daily basis, but I'm writing about it because I made a deliberate effort to discuss proper etiquette and manners to draw their attention to it.

We'll be covering some other topics like phone manners and things like that in the next few days.
ED also chose to bake cookies this week on her special day.  LD wanted to make candy... which we did.  It turned out, um, rather different than the original recipe since we didn't have enough corn syrup.  Instead he made a very hard candy! While they served their dessert with fruit and sliced vegies, we'll aim for a bit more of a healthy snack next week! :)

 P.S. I'm happy that I incorporated these lessons in this week. It's amazing how many times you need to use  common courtesy. I was so happy when DD (my shy one) said, "Excuse me, I'd like to pass by" to a gentleman at the library just as we had practiced at home!

1 comment:

  1. Good job DD! I know we work hard here on making sure to say please and thank you and learning how to use our manners. It always makes me proud when he does it in public without being told. :)