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I do not use this saying. I think children should be able to contribute to the dinner table conversation and I always took this saying to mean that kids were not allowed to speak if the adults were, ykwim?
I'm a fan of indoor voice/outdoor voice, though.
ditto im thinking it was more recently used to keep kids from always interrupting adults trying to have a conversation
I used to have friends who thought that children should be seen and not heard... Heck, sometimes they would shove the children out of sight so they did not have to mess with them. I, on the other hand, have not felt that way. Everyday I look at my 13-year-old, I recall her tiny one-week-old body laying on my lap and tears flow from my eyes as I recall how much of a miracle they are to me. I allow my daughter to have a voice. She voices her opinions to me without any consequences. I mean... how is she supposed to know herself 100% and know how the world works if she is not allowed to speak or see?
I don't really practice this saying. I try to find a balance of making sure DD feels like a valuable part of our family (contributing to conversation and opinions) while instilling manners (not interrupting adults talking).
This is good practice for us during Bible study.
It's hard for DH and I to have a conversation with a little voice constantly interrupting. I do ask DD's feelings on things...even if she just wants to gibber. It makes her feel important, too.