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To think that a 5 year old child should automatically take their plate into the kitchen etc?

(80 Posts)
CatMandu Thu 11-Sep-08 12:06:18

Ds and dd2 both had friends to play a couple of days ago, so we had five children for supper. One of the guests looked at me as if I was asking him to do something extraordinary when I asked him to take his plate into the kitchen. He also just wandered away from the table when the food was finished.

Now, it made me wonder if I'm a little unrealistic expecting children to ask to leave the table and to clear their plates away. I don't want to embarrass my dc's or their friends. The children were all 5 and 6.

girlandboy Thu 11-Sep-08 12:13:11

No, I don't think you are unreasonable. Good manners start early. My children are not allowed to just wander away after finishing their food - they wait until told to go. At that age, I had to actually say "Please may I leave the table" though my kids don't say this.
I suppose the guest wouldn't know what was expected in your house, but I always say to my dc's friends "take your plates into the kitchen for me please". They don't seem to mind.

CostaRicanCod Thu 11-Sep-08 12:13:26

mine all do

DrNortherner Thu 11-Sep-08 12:14:39

My ds is 6 and he does.

CountessDracula Thu 11-Sep-08 12:17:19

Mine asks to leave the table but as it is in the kitchen I don't bother to make her load it into the dishwasher

My son (only just 4) always asks to leave the table (during and after the meal). He also clears the whole table with his Sbrother 9 and Ssister 10 on their weekends with us.

VinegarTits Thu 11-Sep-08 12:19:50

Just because your own children do it doesnt mean all children do it automatically, his parents might be a bit more relaxed about it, plus he is only 5/6 so he might have been shy, or not know it was the right thing to do. You cant expect somebody elses 5/6 year to know the rules of your house. In his house they might take it in turns to clear the table or whatever, yabu

CatMandu Thu 11-Sep-08 12:21:15

Well I kind of assumed it was what most children do, but I do have slight dragon tendancies so I was worried that I was BU. I don't drum 'please may I leave the table' in either, but they do know to ask.

It's quite good having other children around, I realised that ds isn't that loud as his friend was just as shouty. Having a mix of boys and girls was interesting too - the girls all played nicely, made 'potions' in the garden and happily said goodbye to each other. The boys charged about being macho, but then cried when it was home time - ahh.

Anna8888 Thu 11-Sep-08 12:22:01

I don't expect the children to clear their plates individually from the table. One or two people at most clear up each course, and after dinner.

In a lot of households, including mine, each person getting up from the table and putting his/her plate away would be the height of bad manners wink.

Othersideofthechannel Thu 11-Sep-08 12:25:15

I think they should do it if asked but not do it 'automatically'.
We usually eat in the kitchen and I would rather one person clear the table for everyone than have four people bumping into each other.

Anna8888 Thu 11-Sep-08 12:30:52

Yes, the traffic jams in front of the dishwasher are too much to bear OSOTC wink

CatMandu Thu 11-Sep-08 12:33:00

Ahhh - interesting, I might implement such a system. Actually, no I can see I'd spend too much time sorting out the 'who did it last time' arguements.


Othersideofthechannel Thu 11-Sep-08 12:33:50


Othersideofthechannel Thu 11-Sep-08 12:34:44

We don't have a system. It is DH or I randomly. The children help lay the table.

laweaselmys Thu 11-Sep-08 12:40:48

I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't know or indeed if they did but just forgot, it's the kind of thing you frequently have to remind certain forgetful 5/6 yr olds to do.

Oblomov Thu 11-Sep-08 12:41:21

Ds(4.8) asks to leave the table. takes his plates in from snacks, and lunch but not from main dinner. Not sure why. I clear those.

thesockmonsterofdoom Thu 11-Sep-08 12:48:05

mine neither ask to leave the table or take their plates tro the kitchen, priorities, it has taken me long enough to get them to eat food so i can't say i caretoo much about their table manners.

FAQ Thu 11-Sep-08 12:50:55

Mine 4.9 and nearly 8 usually remember to take their plate through to the kitchen when they've finished - but (like me) they're human and do sometimes forget.

TheConfusedOne Thu 11-Sep-08 12:52:37

My 2 year old mindees do!

We finish dinner, they have a wipe for their hands and mouths, get down and bring their plates to me.

They do this from the age of getting out of a high chair!

Mutt Thu 11-Sep-08 12:53:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CatMandu Thu 11-Sep-08 13:06:00

Yes, your right I don't think I meant guests should do it automatically.

CostaRicanCod Thu 11-Sep-08 13:19:50

mien do that then get epelign opotatoes f the next meal

MrsMattie Thu 11-Sep-08 13:21:30

I don't expect young children to do anything automatically. A gentle reminder from the grown ups around works perfectly well.

Anna8888 Thu 11-Sep-08 13:23:20


CostaRicanCod Thu 11-Sep-08 13:25:04

i lounge and bark orders.
god kids' tea yesterday was late( oven at wrong temp)

they ate it in the back of the car ont he way to tennis
only for her to tell me it now starts at 6pm [abgry]

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