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Good Manners for Kids: What Every Child Should Know

23 Oct 2014 – 12:02 AM EDT

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Manners are essential in life and are necessary for everyone, of any age, to learn. Good manners, for kids are very important and the sooner they learn some basic manners early in life, the more chance they will have at creating healthy relationships and presenting themselves in an appropriate way with regards to social situations.

Parents need to teach good manners to their kids and need to keep reinforcing them as they grow older so they can conduct themselves in a socially accepted way as teens, then adults. Good manners, for kids, are essential to becoming part of society, making new friends, and encouraging new experiences. Children who possess manners at a young age tend to build friendships easier and are accepted into more social circles. Being mindful of manners as a child can eventually turn into job acceptances, new experiences, strong relationships and a great sense of self confidence down the road.

Common Courtesy

Phrases like ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ are extremely important comments to teach your child as soon as they can speak. Also known as the ‘magic word’, please should be said when kids are asking for something from someone. Thank you is a phrase that should always be said when something is given to a child, whether in material form or an act of kindness. I.e. If Mom stays up all night gluing the rest of their child’s popsicle stick house project together, a thank you is in order. If Dad buys the kids ice cream, a thank you is appropriate behavior. Saying these famous two phrases will go a long way, both now and in their adult lives.

Table Manners Are Imperative

Are you constantly telling your kids to keep their elbows off the table or to sit up straight when sitting at the dinner table? Good. These are very important manners to have. Table manners are what separates humans from wild animals. Teach your kids to sit up right when eating, to wait until everyone is seated before eating, to use their knife and fork appropriately, and to be polite when it comes to conversation. Too many families let these simple table manners slide and it can have negative outcomes.

Asking Permission

It is important for kids to ask for permission before doing something. By teaching them this simple technique they will save themselves a lot of trouble. Kids sometimes get into trouble for doing something they are actually allowed to do because they simply did not ask first. Remind your kids constantly that asking for permission before doing something or taking action will be more beneficial for them when it comes to avoiding timeouts and groundings.

Stop Negative Comments

Remind your kids that speaking negative about another person is not polite and it may hurt the other person’s feelings. Tell them to mind their manners and keep negative comments about other people to themselves.

These basic manners can allow a child to possess etiquette tools for the future and can help them build strong relationships that further develop into healthy social circles.