I love that we have so many ways to communicate. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, emails and texting quickly connect us with friends near and far. And receiving a handwritten letter or a long phone call can be the highlight of the day. However, the most powerful way to communicate is face to face, especially with those in our own home. June is National Effective Communications Month, a time to focus on the importance of good communication.
American inventor Thomas Edison proposed to his second wife in Morse code
— he had taught her this code so they could communicate in secret while her family was around!
Practicing good communication skills easily occurs at the dinner table. Teaching our children how to speak and listen well are life skills they will need. Through conversation, children learn how to express themselves and stand up for their beliefs while learning to respect the opinions of others. Did you know that overall literacy improves by sharing dinner conversation together? In fact, research shows that children who participate in conversation at the dinner table learn more new words than their peers. Even for adults, chatting about one’s day helps us feel more connected to each other.
Elephants are so terrified of bees that they even have a special communication that means,
“Run away, the bees are angry.”
5 Tips to encourage conversation and communication at the dinner table
- Turn off distractions, such as the TV or phones. The focus should be on each other.
- Keep the conversation positive. Avoid making the dinner table a time for lectures, angry discussions or discipline of a child.
- Encourage every person a chance to talk and share thoughts. Taking turns encourages listening skills too.
- Bring up an occasional conversation starter, such as a favorite joke or story or a current event. Avoid the “yes” “no” questions that will stop the conversation in its tracks. Ask broader questions such as “What should we do on vacation?” or “What was your favorite thing you ate today?”
- Allow conversation to happen when preparing dinner together and cleaning up. Sometimes these are the best times to open lines of communication and the more we communicate the better we will feel.
Everyone will communicate how much they love these recipes!
Search for more delightful recipes in your DinnerTime Recipe Box.