It seems like these days there are less and less polite young people and children. It can be a real struggle to teach your kids good manners in a world full of ill-mannered children. We believe that politeness isn’t just an ability that your kids learn to use when they feel like it, it should be a whole way of life lived not just by them, but by you, too. One of the first things you need to understand about teaching your kids to be polite is that it is a habit, and all habits take time to form, especially good ones. It will be a long process of developing and maintaining these good habits, but if you want your kids to grow up to be kind and considerate, it’s well worth the effort.
Good Manners to Teach to Toddlers and Preschoolers
For toddlers, it’s important to teach them what counts as good and bad behavior. Around the 18-month mark, kids start paying attention to the behavior of other people, so your example will go a long ways. The preschool age, however, is the best time to instill good manners in your children. If you introduce manners as “big kid skills” that are important to learn, they might just be happy to play along. At this age, kids will be able to form habits that mean a lot to them and are more likely to be a lifelong characteristic.
Here are some things they can learn at these stages:
● Greetings and farewells
● Staying seated while eating
● Saying please and thank you
● Basic table manners
● Learning new, polite vocabulary
Good manners for kids around the kindergarten age are hopefully already well established, but remember that it still will require a lot of patience and encouragement. Kindergartners love to show off their polite skills. Here are some things to work on with kindergartners:
● Making eye contact
● Not interrupting
● Not mumbling
Politeness and manners don’t come easy or naturally, they are things that must be taught and turned into a habit. The whole journey is well worth the effort in the end.