Everyone loves polite children, and our children’s manners are a reflection of us. Good manners and etiquette are the foundation of a happy social life. Some children struggle to comprehend it more than others, but it is our duty as parents to nurture and guide them until they fully understand its function.
A sense of respect
We probably don’t realize it, but a lot of what we try to teach our children stems from respect. Respect comes from a place of sensitivity, so if we teach our children to be sensitive towards the feelings of others, they will automatically learn to be mindful in their actions and words so as not to offend or hurt anyone. It can manifest in the most trivial things, like knowing not to say anything if another girl has funny-looking hair.
“Please” and “thank you”
We should strive to start our children as young as possible. They will very likely not comprehend the significance of what they’re saying, but they will learn that saying “please” gets them what they want, and “thank you” means the end of an interaction. We should lead by example because children like to know that what they do pleases us.
Call people by their names
It’s always nice to hear people call us by our name because it means that we are important to them, which is why we should get our children to begin their phrases by addressing someone by their name, i.e: “Uncle Tom, can I touch your dog, please?”. Our children will slowly begin to realize that saying all these courteous things have a positive effect on adults and that they will likely get what they’re asking for.
Go easy on it
We all grew up with parents who insisted on the “magic word” growing up. It’s okay to do it in moderation, but if we press on every time our children forget, they are going to resent it. We should incorporate it into our speech with our children as much as we can, so they’ll catch on to it on their own accord.