Cooking—and Eating!—with Kids: How Having a Family Dinner is About the Best Thing You Can Do
Do you have regular family dinners? Chance are, you don't. Today, most American families eat a meal together fewer than five days a week. In fact, most American families eat a meal together fewer than five days a week.
This is a shame. (Of course, many people want to have family dinners, but simply lack the time. Also of course, this is understandable.)
But I wonder if people knew just how important family dinners are, they would try to make them happen more often. /react-text The truth is that family dinner time yields results that rival or surpass any other educational activity. Consider the bad news first: A lack of family meal time is highly correlated with:
drugs and alcohol abuse
low academic performance
alienation from parents and family
Now consider the good news: family meal time turns all these results on their head.
Why? Scholar Cody C. Delistraty has explained that, historically,
"The dinner table can act as a unifier, a place of community. Sharing a meal is an excuse to catch up and talk, one of the few times where people are happy to put aside their work and take time out of their day."
Most homeschoolers, I suspect, know this. Sharing family meals is one the many advantages homeschool kids enjoy. Unlike their peers, inundated with homework and extracurricular activities, these kiddos get a lot of healthy, happy, beneficial time around the dinner table with the people who know them and love them best.
How awesome is that?
At Sunflower Education, we believe in family meal time as a joyous blessing. Almost as much as cooking and eating is making family meal time especially educational: