Teaching good manners to little ones

Written by: Karla Issa

As a parent, you have had days when your children seem unmanageable. In reality, all children misbehave. 


Teaching proper etiquette from a young age is essential to a child’s social development. While all children learn in different ways and at different rates, manners should be a priority in a child’s life. Adults are constantly on display for children, and children will model what they witness day-to-day. Here are some tips and tricks you can implement on your way to having a better-behaved child: 

  • Use “please,” “thank you” and “pardon me” even when children are babies. It is never too early for a child to hear certain key words. The more familiar they are, the more comfortable children will be using them. 
  • Try not to make manners a “task.”  Being polite and having proper etiquette is not a chore; it should be something that becomes second nature.  
  • Reminding one to say “please” and “thank you” is fair, but forcing a child will make etiquette seem negative.  
  • When you hear children say something polite, respond pleasantly and positively. For example: “Pardon me, Mommy?” “Thank you for being so polite, Charlie, I said…” 
  • It is always polite to excuse yourself for invading someone else’s personal space and be grateful when people do something for you. Having the confidence to look someone in the eye and thank him or her for the gesture can be difficult for a child to understand. However, with a good example, children will use manners as easily as breathing and eating.  

With a little discipline and constant repetition of these ideas, you and your child will benefit from the rewards of good manners. 

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Posted on January 16, 2012 at 12:27 PM