7 Tips to Teach Kids Proper Etiquette

It is important to start young when teaching kids proper etiquette. However, it is never too late to steer your children in the right direction! There are far too many undisciplined kids running off their mouths, and being disrespectful to adults and peers these days. As parents, it is our responsibility to instill good behavior, and proper etiquette in our children’s lives, so they can become well-mannered and polite adults.

Below are seven tips to help you teach kids proper etiquette

1. Be a Role Model
Kids follow their parents’ behaviors, and when they see their parents acting and behaving poorly, they may not think anything is wrong with the behavior. Quite often, if it’s not corrected, then kids will react the same way in similar situations. Set good examples for your kids, and they will follow suit. (ref. Proverbs 22:6)

2. Correct Poor Behavior
It’s better to nip it in the bud, than leave it to deal with later. If you have a sensitive child, you can talk to them privately. There’s no need to get bent out of shape. Make sure that you speak with your child without being condescending, and use tact if you’re correcting a mistake on the spot. Loving correction will work far better than harshness. (ref. 1 Peter 4:8)

3. Practice Daily
Make it a habit for you and your kids to practice proper etiquette every day. When you practice good manners at home, you are more likely to remember to use your manners when you’re out and around others. You won’t have to think twice or be reminded because it will come naturally. (ref. 2 Timothy 2:15)

4. Important Words
Teach your kids early on to use polite words such as please, thank you, sorry, excuse me, and may I. These words are important to have in their vocabulary. Like I said, kids learn from their parents, so you have to use these words when you speak to them. Another thing is to make sure that they use words that show respect to adults. For example, a child should not call an adult by their first name as if they are peers. So, if you have a friend named Karen, your child should call them Miss Karen (or even Ms. Last Name depending on how close the relationship is). This teaches them to respect authority. (ref.  Ephesians 4:29, Matthew 12:37, Leviticus 19:32, Titus 2)

5. Positive Reinforcement
It’s important for kids of all ages to get positive reinforcement when they are first learning about proper etiquette. This is to acknowledge that you approve of their polite and respectful behavior. They may also need some guidance along the way–and positive & helpful is the way to go. (ref. Philippians 4:8 )

6. Patience
You must realize that proper etiquette is not something one learns over night. It will take time before your child will fully grasp the importance of exhibiting good manners. Proper etiquette does not only involve speaking properly, but listening and learning as well. Bad habits are hard to break; give it time, your love and support–and before you know it they will be headed on the right track. (ref. Galatians 6:9, Romans 8:25, Ephesians 4:2)

7. Proper Language Skills
Teach your young children and teenagers to speak properly, and to use appropriate language by avoiding slang and bad words. They need to learn how to speak properly. “Like” is not an adjective and “um” must not be overused. Nothing irks me more than when I hear a kid say the work “like” 10 times in one short phrase! We need to set a better example and correct them. If we are well-spoken, more than likely our children will be too. (ref. Ephesians 4:29)

7 Tips to Teach Kids Proper Etiquette

I hope that these 7 tips encourage you to teach your children proper etiquette! Please leave your ideas and comments below!

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