How to Take Kids to a Wedding

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How to Take Kids to a Wedding


From the moment they're born, children start to learn the social graces. The smart parent gives them every chance to become more confident in social situations. A wedding offers a great teaching opportunity.


  1. Explain to your child that you will be going to a wedding and a reception.
  2. Answer your child's questions about what a wedding is and what he can expect to see and experience.
  3. Make sure your child understands that this is a "dress-up" occasion and that he is expected to be on his best behavior.
  4. Review everything your child will be expected to do: sit quietly during the ceremony, sign the guest book, shake hands with lots of people, go through the receiving line before the buffet line, kiss the bride, congratulate the groom and so forth.
  5. Help your child practice shaking hands and introducing himself.
  6. Make sure your child is wearing comfortable clothes, and tell him that he should ask you before he removes his tie at the reception.
  7. Bring quiet snacks like raisins or games that can fit into a pocket for younger children.
  8. Use the nursery, if one is available, for babies and younger children. Both your child and other guests will be appreciative.
  9. Sit where your child can easily see the ceremony.
  10. Leave the ceremony if your child becomes fussy or noisy.
  11. At the reception, help your child remember what you have practiced and be there to help with introductions and manners.
  12. Allow your child to dance, if he wishes, and fully enjoy the party.
  13. Remember that it's not appropriate for children to participate in catching the bouquet or garter.
  14. Make sure your child doesn't annoy the guests, create a disturbance or become overly tired and cranky. If you see any of this happening, it's time to go home.
  15. Thank your hosts before you leave.

Tips & Warnings

  • If your child's name doesn't appear on the invitation, assume that he is not invited.
  • Make sure your child has practiced saying "Please," "Thank you" and "Excuse me"; knows not to interrupt adults; knows not to push, shove or grab; and knows how to use utensils and a napkin correctly.
  • When you bring a child to a wedding, you may have to miss part of the ceremony or leave the reception early. It's better to leave quickly and unobtrusively than to cause a disturbance and annoy your hosts and fellow guests with an unruly or cranky child.

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