The use of table settings and good manners enhances food as a social experience.
Table settings and basic manners can enhance both the aesthetic value of food and family interaction during mealtime.
The following quote is found in FOOD FOR TODAY, 1990 teachers' edition.
"In 1387 King Richard II of England held a great feast. Among the provisions were 11,000 eggs, 12 bushels of apples, and many kinds of meat, including 16 oxen and 120 sheep. In the castle's great hall, the tables were set with fine linen cloths and napkins. Dozens of servants hurried about, bringing food and seeing to the comfort of the guests" (p.267).
Can you think of times when your family traditions have included special meals and foods, similar to King Richards's great feast?
"Your own feasts will no doubt be less elaborate, but you will still want your family and guests to enjoy their meal" (p.267).
The way you set your table is important, because it influences three things:
Restaurants create an atmosphere by the way they set the table. Name various eating establishments and discuss the feelings students may have at each of them.
The food is not too much different between some restaurants but the atmosphere is. Meals eaten at home can have a wonderful atmosphere. Whether you eat at the kitchen table, a card table, counter top, a dining room table, or on TV trays the atmosphere can be influenced by doing the following:
The tableware needed for each placesetting includes dinnerware, glassware and flatware. Your budget is the first consideration when you purchase tableware. NOTE: Refer to any good food text for a discussion of tableware and table linens and for tips on buying and caring for tableservice. In preparation for discussion assign the students to read in their textbooks about styles of table service .
There are 6 main styles of table service. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each type of service.
1. FAMILY STYLE SERVICE
Food is put in serving dishes, brought to the table, and passed around in clockwise order to avoid confusion.
2. PLATE SERVICE, also called BLUE PLATE
No serving dishes are needed because food is portioned out on individual plates in the kitchen. This goes faster if several people help to serve up the food.
3. MODIFIED ENGLISH SERVICE
All plates are stacked at one end of the table. The host/hostess carves meat and places it with the vegetable on the plate. The plate is passed around the table. When everyone has been served, the remainder of the food is passed as in the family style service for everyone to serve themselves.
4. FORMAL SERVICE
The most elaborate style of food service is called Continental or Russian style. This service includes a number of courses, each served separately on clean plates. Initially, the table is set with flatware, glassware and a service plate (a large size plate). The first course, an appetizer or soup, is placed on its own dish and then placed on the service plate which never actually has food directly on it. The service plate is cleared from the table in preparation for the next course. This type of formal service requires waiter/waitress help.
5. COMPROMISE SERVICE
This type combines both the Formal and the Modified English styles. The appetizer is served in single portions from the kitchen as in Formal style. The main course is served as in the Modified English style. The salad/dessert is served in individual portions and all else is passed around as in the Modified English style.
6. BUFFET SERVICE
The food is set on a large table, kitchen counter, or side tables. The plates are put at one end of the food along with the napkins, flatware, and beverage glasses. Flatware can be wrapped in the napkin for easier pickup. The food should be arranged so that the traffic will flow efficiently. People serve themselves and carry the food to their places at the table.
There are rules of etiquette to follow in proper placement of a table setting:
There are three components of a placesetting:
There are 6 rules in proper dinnerware placement:
There are differences in flatware:
There are 4 rules in proper flatware placement:
There are rules for glassware placement
People are often judged by the manners they display:
If you apply basic principles of setting the table, table service and manners you can create a pleasant atmosphere so that your relationships and appearance of food are enhanced . Good manners show respect for others.
Point out to students that other things should be taking place at the table besides eating such as:
NOTE: For content on Table Manners see TABLE MANNERS SORT.
LEARNING ACTIVITIES AND TEACHING STRATEGIES
As a Bell-ringer or motivator, read the words to the song made popular by Bing Crosby in the movie, "The Bells of St. Mary's". If possible get a recording of the song or show that portion of the movie.
WOULD YOU RATHER BE A PIG
Would you like to swing on a star
Carry moonbeams home in a jar
And be better off than you are
Or would you rather be a pig?
A pig is an animal with dirt on his face
His shoes are a terrible disgrace,
He's got no manners when he eats his food
He's fat and lazy and extremely rude,
But if you don't care a feather or a fig
You may grow up to be a PIG!
In order to show that the way in which food is served affects its appeal, have students participate in a CAKE SERVICE ACTIVITY. (This is a very effective activity.)
Ask students to remain quiet during the entire activity but to beware of their feelings regardless of whether they are participants or observers of this activity.
Discuss the students' feelings with them. This is a valuable part of the activity.
Using the transparency (TABLESETTING) or, if available, actual china, crystal, and silverware, show a formal place setting and discuss the proper procedures for setting a table.
Using pictures, have each student cut out and mount dinnerware, glassware, and flatware for a casual and a formal place setting. For each place setting the student will explain why it personally fits her/his choice of meal.
Students will use the TABLEWARE NOTETAKING OUTLINE to record information about various dinnerware, glassware, and flatware.
During the TABLE SETTING EXERCISE students will list what is wrong with six table settings. Discuss. This option may be used as a quiz following a demonstration.
Students will practice setting tables (as described in class). If materials are brought from home, do not encourage expensive, breakable items.)
Students will plan with their lab group the napkins, tablecloths or placemats, and the centerpiece they will bring from home for their lab on an assigned day. Other items are optional. Caution: Be sure that the centerpiece is well-packed so that it doesn't break.
Assign groups of students to demonstrate various methods of NAPKIN FOLDING. Give them time to practice before they demonstrate to the class.
Small groups of students will be given descriptions of a type of meal service. Using tableware from their units they will pantomime the assigned activity using TABLE SERVICE PANTOMIME as a guide.
Students need 10 minutes to plan actions. After each pantomime is performed the teacher will lead a discussion about the advantages and disadvantages and the appropriateness of the occasion.
Following the student table setting demonstrations discuss the various table services.
Students will prepare CHICKEN SANDWICH SQUARES and set the table properly. This is an excellent vehicle to practice Blue Plate or Modified English and also to practice communication skills.
Have each unit prepare a simple meal, SPAGHETTI, with a tossed salad, garlic bread, and ice water. Have each unit serve it to practice a different experience from one or both of the following: Family Style Service and/or Buffet Style Service.
For a homework assignment have the students plan and carry out two types of service at two different family meals using the TABLE SERVICE HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT.
Do a TABLE MANNERS SORT on good and poor manners. Students will respond to each behavior as being appropriate or inappropriate. Students may also role play correct and incorrect behavior.
TEACHER DIRECTIONS: Photocopy this activity for each unit in the foods lab. Each page could be laminated so that the activity will last longer. Cut apart a set of the behaviors for each unit. Put each set in an envelope.
After a short discussion on table manners students will act out different incidents and describe what should be done in each situation. See MIND YOUR MANNERS for situations for role playing. (This may also be used as a handout worksheet).
In groups of four or five, have the students write a short story or case study on manners. Include eight good examples and four poor examples. Designate a spokesperson to read them aloud. Have other class members listen and identify the examples. As an alternative the students could role play the case study for the class.
Use ETIQUETTE AT A GLANCE as a handout resource for students.
The teacher explains the role playing pantomime that each unit will do by showing a good or bad manner. See DINNERTIME MANNERS for role play situations.
The teacher gives the students time to make up skits and then lets them perform while making comments to help them out.
After all units are done, the teacher sums up any not discussed details and moves on to the table setting portion of the lesson.
Let the students examine and critique 8-10 centerpieces provided by the teacher.
Students will participate in a vegetable centerpiece lab. They will fill a vase with water then prepare celery stalks, radishes cut into roses, broccoli flowerettes and green pepper strips. The vase is filled with celery stalks. Toothpicks are used to make flowers with radishes and broccoli on the celery stalks. Leaves are green pepper strips.
Students will participate in a fruit centerpiece lab using pineapple boats or watermelon baskets.
Students will participate in a cookie centerpiece lab using cookies purchased at the supermarket (the kind that are shaped like flowers and have frosting in the middle that holds the front cookie and back cookie together___Oreo type). Place the cookies on wooden skewers to make flowers. Cut Iris-shaped leaves from construction paper and arrange in a vase.
Arrange a tray of any pretty-colored food: i.e., finger sandwiches, cookies, hors d'oeuvres, fruits, ice cream balls, etc. and use as a centerpiece. (Fruit and vegetables preserved in different-size glass jars also make pretty centerpieces when artfully arranged).
Following a teacher demonstration on centerpieces, brainstorm in groups of 4-5 students inexpensive table decorations that can be made from common household items.
Example: Ideas from sacks - Fill six paper sacks with various items. Have the students create centerpieces from them.
Fall leaves, weeds, dried corn tassels, crookneck squash, small pumkins, minature squashes, candles, colored paper, grains on the stem such as wheat, oats, corn, barley, odd bottles, dishes, pans, etc.
Students will evaluate their table setting and manners unit by taking a TABLE SERVICE/ETIQUETTE QUIZ.