Saturday, August 02, 2008

Free Curriculum: Teaching Table Manners

From The School Kitchen Textbook, by Mary Johnson Lincoln, published in 1915:

There is no place where it is more essential, or where there
is a better opportunity to observe the golden rule, than at the
daily home table. "

If you please," and " No, I thank you," are in far better
taste than " Yes, thanks," and " No, thanks." Accept what
is offered or placed before you ; but should your preference
be asked, and you have any, it is allowable to name it at once.
When a plate has been filled for you, keep it, and do not from
mistaken courtesy pass it to the next person. Make some
sign of acknowledgment for what is served you, either by an
inclination of the head or a quiet " thank you," whether it be
offered by those presiding at the table or by the waitress.
Courtesy to all, and especially to a child or a servant, should
be the daily habit.

In family serving, wait until all are helped before you begin
to eat, and be on the alert to assist in the serving as much as
possible. But where there are trained waiters and several
courses, begin as soon as you are helped that there may be no

Keep the spoon in the saucer, because if left in the cup,
both may be overturned.

Do not talk or drink while food is in the mouth.

Take your soup quietly, from the side of the spoon, lest
in bending your arm to put the end of the spoon in your
mouth you interfere with your next neighbor. Dip it into
the plate from instead of toward you, and thus avoid dripping
the soup.
Read more here.

And from The Goops, published in 1900: Table Manners, Parts I and II.

The Goops character training books have been republished in color.

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