Like anything in child development, children must be taught manners and how to behave politely. By beginning at an early age they’ll establish better relationships with other children and adults throughout their lifetime. By the age of two, children are quite capable of responding to modeling good behavior, polite manners and other details associated with manners. Therefore, parents must remember that children will emulate what they see for themselves. For instance, a child that hears obscenities day in and day out will more than likely develop the same form of language patterns him/herself. So be cautious, children are little sponges. They absorb everything that they are exposed too.
Manners “START” Here: Toddler Manners-
Beginning when children are at or around the age of two is critical to teaching him/her good manners and polite behaviors. At this time, the interaction between child and adult is at an all-time high. We are assisting them in learning and expanding their vocabulary, fine & gross motor skills, but more importantly skills associated with communicating with others.
At this point, we are teaching toddlers the “polite” way to communicate his/her needs. It is through repetition and modeling that we encourage our children to use polite words and actions to secure the things that they desire. For instance, teaching a toddler to use the word “please” is paramount to the manner in which the child’s requests are received by others. As children, adolescents, teenagers and adults, this doesn’t change. The manner in which an individual goes about communicating with others will often dictate the response they receive. Top “4” “Magic Words” to Teach your Toddler: Words to Last a Lifetime
“Please” is a word that often results in a positive response. It is received by others well and tends to provide the outcome desired (when within reason). For instance, a toddler who says, “May I please have a cookie” will more than likely receive the cookie (if the time is right). However, a teenager asking for a brand new sports car for his 16th birthday, lathered with “Please” may not have the desired result. But, it was sure nice to hear the word used in a sentence.
“Thank You” is something that should automatically follow phrases using the word “please”. In fact, teaching one without the other is quite pointless. Individuals of all ages like to hear the phrase “thank you” after a deed is performed or a request has been honored. This doesn’t go away with age. In fact, it often means a lot more to the older individual still exercising good manners.
“Excuse Me” is another vital phrase that children should be taught….especially when we’re on the phone!!! It seems that children ALWAYS need our attention when we are engaged in a conversation with others, personally or over the phone. Teaching a child these two simple words allows them to “interrupt” in a polite manner indicating that they need our assistance or attention at that time. It certainly beats the other option which is the child repetitively calling out one’s name, tugging on your arm or throwing a loud temper tantrum. Obviously these two simple words can be taught to be used at other times too such as when a child burps aloud, bumps into another individual or following other various bodily functions.
“I’m Sorry” is one that suggests that a child understands his/her actions and can be used to make the individual “hurt” or “saddened” feel better. As most of us know, this phrase will be used throughout our lifetime and one that should be included in your list of polite behaviors & manners as without it one will suffer immeasurable when he/she cannot establish or maintain interpersonal relationships with others.
Although teaching manners may require a child reaching a certain age, using them indefinitely should follow-suit. For without manners, people will often find it difficult to be accepted by others, or perhaps shunned for a lack of manners and basic interpersonal skills.