Good Manners for Heading Back to School

It is unfortunately not uncommon these days too hear how bullying and or an ill-mannered child can intimidate another student in school. Good manners can make a big difference in a student’s success and/or failure in many aspects of life. This is why it is so imperative for parents to begin teaching etiquette to their children as early as possible. Oftentimes, as an etiquette expert, I am asked to suggest key ways to instill good manners into children, especially with such a fast-paced family schedule. What I like to suggest is to participate in activities that infuse kids with interpersonal skills such as respect, kindness and being a role model/leader among their peers. Here are some Back-To-School in-home etiquette tips any parent can do with their child to prepare them for school success.

  1. Use Key Gold and True Words – Please, thank you, excuse me and you’re welcome. Although we know to use these words it can be very easy to fall out of practice. It is good for parents to start working with their children to emphasize the use of these words. Once a child, or teen, understands this etiquette structure he or she will begin to automatically use the words in the appropriate manner. This will be a positive stand-out for the child in school, and very much appreciated by teachers.
  2. Neat and Tidy – Before school starts is a great time to begin helping children understand how to clean up on their own. Whether coming in the house from the pool, beach or just outside with friends, we need to train children and teens to pick-up after themselves. This skill set may not seem like a big deal until you have a classroom full of students. Again, if your child is accustomed to cleaning up after themselves this will definitely set them apart as a leader and role model. Big plus for them! A great time to practice this rule is at the dinner table as well as practicing washing hands before and after meals.
  3. Respect others and their differences – This skill set is huge. I cannot emphasize this enough. Most schools have now implemented a no-tolerance code for any child who cannot respect others. Monitor the way your child speaks and/or comments about others, even their friends. What may seem to be a harmless comment or action to a child can be detrimental to another. Practice speaking positive words or giving positive compliments to their siblings and friends. In today’s “give me what I want society” some kids may feel this skill is insignificant; however, understanding the feelings of others and making others feel good is a leadership skill that teachers look upon with high regard.

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