Why did I research this?
I know for sure that manners are important everywhere in life and I know that they have an effect on the relationships we have as people but how do I encourage the use of them everyday with my children, besides saying the usual and sounding like a broken record; “I beg your pardon?”, “pardon?”, “please…” “thank you Mum”?
What did I find out?
There are loads of ‘other’ prompts that can be used to remind children to use manners everyday. These are some of what I have found and have been testing in my home when manners have disappeared.
“I want jam.”
“Can you think of a polite way to ask for jam Felix?
Grandma gives Felix a present and Felix is in such shock that he doesn’t say thank you.
“Felix, what do we say when someone gives us something?”
“I don’t want those shoes.”
“Do you mean ‘would you mind Dad?'”
“These carrots are yak.”
“You mean these carrots are not to your liking.”
“It is yours but is that the best way you can ask for it?”
“Get my ball Mum.”
“Is there another way you could ask me, with manners?”
How is this useful?
By having a variety of responses to bad manners, one can reduce sounding like a broken record to themselves and to their children.
Teaching manners gives children some of the tools needed to:
- get along with others
- get through each day more easily
- know what to expect and how to get by in new and different situations.
Post. P and Post Senning. C (2004) Emily Post’s The Guide To Good Manners For Kids. USA: Harper Collins