Wednesday, August 20, 2014

1920's Lunchroom Etiquette for Boys and Girls

"Girls are usually daintier and more easily taught than boys, but most children will behave badly at table if left to their own devices. Even though they may commit no serious offenses, such as making a mess of their food or themselves, or talking with their mouths full, all children love to crumb bread, flop this way and that in their chairs, knock spoons and forks together, dawdle over their food, feed animals—if any are allowed in the room—or become restless and noisy." Emily Post 1922
School Lunch Room Etiquette for Girls and Boys in 1921
"Cleanness of body was ever deemed to proceed from a due reverence of God." — Bacon

1) See that your hands are clean.

2) Avoid rushing into or through the Lunch Room. Walk.

3) When carrying your food to your table, pay strict attention to getting it to its destination in safety.

4) Eat in the Lunch Room,—not in the corridors, nor in the Assembly Hall, nor on the street. Give four excellent reasons for this direction.

5) Eat slowly and noiselessly; don't "feed." Avoid talking when your mouth is full. Take small mouthfuls, so that you may talk without giving offense. Keep your lips closed when chewing. Never use your knife to carry food to your mouth.

6) In the Lunch Room, as elsewhere, sit with your knees together and with both of your feet on the floor, not on the rounds of your chairs.

7) Don't throw paper and refuse into the receptacles provided; drop it there.

8) Avoid boisterous talking and laughing.

The tones of the voice proclaim quite accurately the social background of the boy, the girl, the man, the woman. Her voice was ever soft, gentle, and low,—an excellent thing in woman.—Shakespeare 
9) Keep elbows and wraps off the Lunch Room tables; furthermore, do not sit on the tables.

10) Leave your place in the Lunch Room tidy and spotless, with your chair pushed up to the table.

11) Rise when an older person enters the room; remain standing until your courtesy is acknowledged, or until the older person is seated. (Optional with the teacher in the schoolroom.)

12) Boys, when a girl or an older person drops a pencil, a book, or anything of the sort, pick it up and return it unobtrusively, but with a little bow.

13) Avoid rushing from the room when the bell rings. Walk.

14) Open the door, boys, but let the girls pass out first, whenever practicable. When many are passing in opposite directions, keep to the right.

15) Never laugh at the accidents or misfortunes of others, even if they have a ridiculous side. Nothing shows ill-breeding so surely. He who laughs at others' woes finds few friends and many foes.


Compiled by contributor Mary Boyd from Gero-Dynamics©

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Moderator for Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia