Summertime is a great opportunity to focus on manners with your kids. With more time for family meals, make the most of these teachable moments. Here are seven tips to keep in mind for your family’s manners makeover!
7 Timely Tips for a Manners Makeover
- Give directions in the positive.
For example, “Please take your elbows off the table” rather than “Don’t put your elbows on the table.”
- Praise success.
A little positive reinforcement can go a long way in strengthening a child’s desire to do well.
- Verbalize your expectations.
“We are having dinner at Grandma’s house tonight. I expect you to sit and the table, eat with a fork, and use a quiet voice.” Children generally desire to live up to Mom and Dad’s expectations.
- Focus on one manner at a time.
Concentrate on table manners then move to phone etiquette with little ones. Quick reminders for tweens and teens work well.
- Be tolerant of lapses but don’t overlook them.
Use slip ups as teachable moments.
- Make it enjoyable!
Humor is helpful with all ages. When my boys were little, I would pretend to be the rude friend that came for lunch and broke every rule in the book; elbows on the table, speaking with my mouth full, napkin left on the table, reaching across others for food. The boys would laugh themselves silly. Then we’d talk about what a polite guest looks like as compared to the rude friend.
- Be a good role model.
Kids always follow our example.
© 2018 Becky Danielson. All rights reserved.
Previously posted on FaithFirstParent.com.
Photo by Matthieu Joannon on Unsplash