Etiquette: Teaching Children Manners

Teaching etiquette and manners to your children should start early. To a toddler

Your child learns manners (along with many other character traits) from you. They grow up watching you interact with others and learn how to act and behave. That's why it's so important for parents to behave politely and civilly with other, so their children will grow up to be similar people.

When you interact with your friends, be sure to say "please" and "thank you" in front of your kids. When your children see that that's really how people interact, they'll be more respectful of others and will be more likely to exhibit these traits themselves. If you aren't polite to others, your children will be less likely to be polite to others.

When you're teaching your children to be polite, you need to give them frequent lessons in what to say in particular situations. You need to tell your children that they should say "excuse me" when they are wanting to get through a crowd of people. They need to say "please" when they are requesting someone's services or help. And they need to say "thank you" whenever someone does something nice for them. These words should considered "magic" words between you and your children. They should be held in esteem and be used often.

There's really not "trick" to teaching your children manners. You need to be aware that your children learn manners from you. They learn them both in the way you act and in what you tell them to do. Believe it or not, children listen when you tell them things. They think you are god-like. They think you have all the answers and know exactly what to do in every situation. You need to take advantage of this by showing them proper behavior, and they'll grow up to be polite young men and women and later polite adults.

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