Adventist Adventurer Awards and Answers/Courtesy


Explain what “courtesy” means.


Courtesy is the use of exceptional manners to treat other people with respect and care. It means treating people as you would wish to be treated were you in their situation.

Recite and explain the Golden Rule.

Matthew 7:12 (NIV)
So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

The easiest way to apply the Golden Rule to real life is to ask yourself the question "How would you like to be treated in similar circumstances?" Then treat the other person that way.

Be able to demonstrate good table manners.

  • Eat with a fork unless the food is meant to be eaten with fingers. Only babies eat with fingers.
  • Sit up and do not hunch over your plate; wrists or forearms can rest on the table, or hands on lap. You don't want to look like a Neanderthal.
  • Don't stuff your mouth full of food, it looks gross, and you could choke.
  • Chew with your mouth closed. No one wants to be grossed out seeing food being chewed up or hearing it being chomped on. This includes no talking with your mouth full.
  • Don't make any rude comments about any food being served. It will hurt someone's feelings.
  • Always say thank you when served something. Shows appreciation.
  • If the meal is not buffet style, then wait until everyone is served before eating. It shows consideration.
  • Eat slowly and don't gobble up the food. Someone took a long time to prepare the food, enjoy it slowly. Slowly means to wait about 5 seconds after swallowing before getting another forkful.
  • When eating rolls, tear off a piece of bread before buttering. Eating a whole piece of bread looks tacky.
  • Don't reach over someone's plate for something. Politely ask that the item to be passed to you. Shows consideration.
  • Do not pick anything out of your teeth, it's gross. If it bothers you that bad, excuse yourself and go to the restroom to pick.
  • Always use a napkin to dab your mouth, which should be on your lap when not in use. Remember, dab your mouth only. Do not wipe your face or blow your nose with a napkin, both are gross. Excuse yourself from the table and go the restroom to do those things.
  • When eating at someone's home or a guest of someone at a restaurant, always thank the host and tell them how much you enjoyed it. At least say that you liked the dinner or mention a specific item that was particularly tasty, i.e. the dessert was great. Again, someone took time, energy, and expense to prepare the food, so show your appreciation.

Properly set the table


One of the best ways to help children learn to set a table is to practice! It is easy to set up a place setting with plastic/paper ware (or potluck place setting from the Fellowship Hall!).

Online search for Online search for a "printable placemat for setting table kids"

Correctly ask for and pass food

  • Pass food from the left to the right. Do not stretch across the table, crossing other guests, to reach food or condiments.
  • If another diner asks for the salt or pepper, pass both together, even if a table mate asks for only one of them. This is so dinner guests won't have to search for orphaned shakers.
  • Set any passed item, whether it's the salt and pepper shakers, a bread basket, or a butter plate, directly on the table instead of passing hand-to-hand.
  • Never intercept a pass. Snagging a roll out of the breadbasket or taking a shake of salt when it is en route to someone else is a no-no.
  • Always use serving utensils to serve yourself, not your personal silverware.

Properly excuse yourself from the table


Say "Excuse me," or "I'll be right back," before leaving the table. Do not say that you are going to the restroom.

Make a telephone call using good telephone manners

When you call someone, and they say hello, what is the first thing you say?

“Hi, this is [name], may I please speak to [whoever the kid I want to play with is]?

When the person on the other line wants to talk to mommy, or someone else, what is a good thing to say before you pass the phone?

“One moment, please.”

What should you say if you need to put the phone down and ask me a question?

“One moment, please. (If you’re talking to someone fancy like the queen of England)”

If you’re talking to a friend, you say, “One second, please, I’ll ask my mom about that.”

What happens if you’re home alone and someone calls?

“I should check the caller ID to make sure it’s mommy or someone I know very good like Daddy or my preschool teacher. Then I can answer it.”

What if you’re home alone, and you didn’t have caller ID and you answer the phone?

If it’s someone we don’t know that well, we say, “She can’t talk right now, can I take a message?”

If it’s someone I don’t know, I just say, “Bye!” and hang up.

Do you ever tell a person on the other line that you are home alone?

No. Unless it’s our grandmother.

What if a babysitter is there with you? Do you ever say the babysitter is with you?


Do you ever say mommy isn’t home?


When someone calls and says, “Can I talk to your mom,” what should you say first?

“Who’s this?”

What’s a better way to say that?

“May I ask who’s calling?”

When someone calls and says they want to talk to so-and-so, and you’re that person, what do you say, “This is her (him)?” or “This is she (he)?”

“This is he.”

Is it polite to yell across the house for me when the phone is for mommy?


What should you do?

I should go and find you, but I’ll talk to the person while I’m looking for you so they won’t get bored.

Share an experience


When an adult was courteous to you


When you were courteous to another person


Show acts of courtesy as you


Ask for a drink


“May I have a drink of water please?”

Say thank you


“Thank you very much, I appreciate that,”



“I am sorry for stepping on you.”

Greet a friend


“Hello, how are you today? I'm glad to see you.”

Share and take turns


“You can go ahead, I will follow after you.”

External Resources


Phone etiquette for kids - Sophistimon Table place mat- Emily Post

US Dining Etiquette Guide- What's Cooking America