Good manners should start at home. Unfortunately, in today's fast-paced world, parents rarely have the time to teach their children proper etiquette skills. Also, if parents don't know how to behave, then children rarely have a chance to learn etiquette skills. Nowadays, most parents send their children off to daycare or school with the attitude of "You fix 'em--I don't have time!"
On a visit to the library, I overheard this...A mother came in with three children--two teenagers and a small child, who was about three years old. Of course, the little one was squirming and fussin'. The mother and the teenagers kept putting their index finger in front of their mouths and shushing her. I looked up and giggled--well, she was a small child, after all. To my horror, a few moments later, I heard the mother tell the little girl to "Shut the **** up!" I simply cannot imagine my mama ever talking to me that way. The worse thing I ever heard my mama say was, "I swannee!" A genteel Southern lady like my mama would never even say "I swear," and that's what I swannee means in Southern talk. So, that was my mama's idea of cussin' and it was reserved for those times when she was about to explode with anger...she's soooo Southern!
Parents should set a good example for their children. They should also take responsibility and teach their children how to behave before they send them off to school. Remember that today's children are tomorrow's leaders. Here's some tips that might help you get started teaching your child how to behave:
~Teach your child to share with others.
~Teach your child to wait their turn.
~Teach your child not to interrupt while others are speaking.
~If you show respect to others, your child will learn a valuable lesson from you.
~Teach your child the importance of being honest.
~If you practice kindness by using kind words like "please, thank you, you're welcome, and excuse me," your child will learn another valuable lesson from you.
~Praise your child when they show good manners.
~Remember to lead by example!
Here's a couple of etiquette books I recommend to parents of small children and teenagers:
For little girls...this one is just the best...White Gloves and Party Manners, by Marjabelle Young (Stewart) and Ann Buchwald
Stand Up, Shake Hands, Say "How Do You Do?" by Marjabelle Young Stewart and Ann Buchwald...an excellent book for little boys
Teen Manners, From Malls to Meals to Messaging and Beyond, by Cindy Post Senning and Peggy Post...a must-have for teenagers. This book answers questions that come up in real life.
Any of these books would make a great gift for a child or teenager. Even better, study the book with them and brush up on your own etiquette skills!
"Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not turn from it."
Thank you so much for stopping by today.