Do the following statistics motivate you? Certainly research is only a part of it – but these facts are compelling. Where many researchers say that family dinners are not happening, I’m encouraged that so many are! And there’s great reasons to commit.
FAMILY DINNER – Point to Ponder 1
Researchers have reported a consistent association between family dinner frequency and teen academic performance. Adolescents who ate family meals five to seven times a week were twice as likely to get A’s in school as those who ate dinner with their families fewer than two times a week. (Source)
FAMILY DINNER – Point to Ponder 2
Over the past 15 years researchers have confirmed what parents have known for a long time: sharing a family meal is good for the spirit, the brain and the health of all family members. Recent studies link regular family dinners with many behaviors that parents pray for: lower rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy and depression, as well as higher grade-point averages and self-esteem. The icing on the cake is that regular family meals also lower the rates of obesity and eating disorders in children and adolescents. What else can families do that takes only about an hour a day and packs such a punch? (Source)
For starters, researchers found that for young children, dinnertime conversation boosts vocabulary even more than being read aloud to. The researchers counted the number of rare words – those not found on a list of 3,000 most common words – that the families used during dinner conversation. Young kids learned 1,000 rare words at the dinner table, compared to only 143 from parents reading storybooks aloud. Kids who have a large vocabulary read earlier and more easily. (Source)
These facts can either discourage us – or motivate us. Just because family dinners aren’t that common in our culture AND they are HARD to do – doesn’t mean we shouldn’t fight for it. The research proves it’s a terrific decision for the emotional and physical health of our families.
Tips For Family Dinner Success:
Set a Goal
Lock arms with your spouse and your kids (they don’t forget promises) to set a goal. If you don’t eat together ever – set a goal for once a week. If you eat together twice, make a goal for 3. And so on. Progress is the key. My friend Sandra Stanley said when hers were teens and all over town – they picked one day and NOTHING could conflict with it. No playdates, no sports practices, no meetings. The entire family committed to being there on this night.
Change the Focus
We often focus on the eating. Making it such a fight over what they will and will not eat. Sure, they need to learn to try new foods and learn to sit in their chair. For our family – dinner has become less about the food and more about the meaningful conversations. This is when we catch up and talk. We also have fun. So, they aren’t always avoiding coming to the table, they are excited. You can do Conversation Cups or any number of games, books or traditions that you love.
I have found that my kids do love structure and knowing what to expect. You can have a “Taco Tuesday” or “Make Our Own Pizza Night” or “Friday Game Night” or even themed dinners. Or, let your kids take turns setting the table. They can get creative with their set up and selections for decor. This creates fun and interest in that time together.
There is one major reason why I create new products for the marketplace that is busting with products – to empower moms and change little lives through innovation in the home. I believe more in solutions than complaining. So, when family dinners started bugging me – I wanted to be able to offer a fun tool to help.
Whether you choose the cups or not – please consider meeting your family for more memorable moments this year.
Conversation Cups FAQs
- What size are they? They are 16 oz glass cups.
- How are they packaged? They come in a branded box (see photo above) that makes them an easy gift to give! Just toss a bow on top.
- Are they cups or glasses? They are GLASS – great quality. We have heard your request on plastic and will consider that in the coming months. Don’t forget these are special and definitely for those kids that can read – who can learn to handle glass at dinner.
- Are they all different? Nope! Four identical glasses in a set – so no bickering between siblings. Everyone has the same fun cup with many questions to choose from.
- Where to buy? Individual customers can buy from my shop or at any local gift shop that carries Magnolia Lane Collection products. Are you a buyer or looking to buy wholesale? Then, contact Magnolia Lane Collection.
Giveaway has ended.