There is nothing as delightful as meeting a young child who is courteous, cultured and displays the finest manners. It can also be quite embarrassing when the child displaying poor manners in public happens to be yours. To ensure children learn the right social skills needed for life, some parents send their children to good finishing schools to acquire such skills.
Now, while such institutions have a lot to offer, parents can teach their children a lot too! However, what’s important is for you to start early and be consistent, and gradually your child will stand out positively!
continued from Part One
7. Invest in Quality Education
It’s often said that education is the best legacy. When choosing a pre-school for your toddler, select one which has teachers and other caregivers employed displaying good manners. This is because during school sessions, your child spends quite some time with these people and they are some sort of authority figure in your child’s life. In addition, if your toddlers’ school has club activities, it may be a good idea to sign up for an etiquette club.
8. Watch the Right Stuff
Our toddlers’ brains are like sponges and they soak up all they see and hear, so it’s important they see and hear the right things. Buy them DVDs like Barney or Pre-School Power, which basically features educative contents emphasising on proper manners.
9. Be Firm and Consistent
Firmness and consistency is essential when imparting any form of knowledge on children. So, teaching your toddler etiquette doesn’t make an exception. If you have been ingesting a number of parenting materials, you would know by now that consistency is key. As parents, we have to consistently ensure our children behave in the proper way. It is easy to get tired of teaching children the same things over and over, but don’t stop reinforcing them, as your firmness and consistency will yield results you will be proud of.
10. Correct Immediately
The fact is that it’s usually easier to turn a blind eye to our children’s bad behaviour than correct them. However, when you correct immediately, your toddler will learn faster and be less likely to repeat the same errors. It’s the same way with etiquette training, when you find your child being rude, sitting improperly, eating with both hands or displaying any other behaviour that’s out of place, make sure you correct immediately so that it’s understood that such behaviour is unacceptable. As always, when correcting our children, it should never be harsh or in anger, rather, it should be instructive, firm and carried out in love.
READ ALSO:Ten Etiquette Rules for Children
11. Play and Learn
Your children’s play time is also a good opportunity to teach them some social graces and skills. Role play which involves imagination can really help them learn how to behave in real life. You can act dramas with them where real life scenarios are played out. One of my favourite ways of teaching my children is by acting out a market or shop scene where I teach them how to address the customer or shopkeeper.
As with instilling values, display of proper etiquette in children is better achieved when you start early. So, let’s start raising our little princes and princesses in style so they can always be a source of pride.