Kids these days are getting more and more out of control!
I kid you not, the other day I was walking out of the post office and a boy (about the age of 8 or 9) was walking down the street totally cussing about one thing or another! Language was coming out of his mouth that I would have been embarrassed even if it had been an adult! And this boy was my daughters age!
I've watched kids run around the grocery store, completely unattended.
I've seen kids completely ignore their parents!
And it makes me so sad!
I still believe that people should treat others with respect. I've said it many times- it doesn't matter if you agree with them or not, you should still respect them. You don't have to like them, but you still have to respect them.
The root of manners, I believe, is respect.
I'm not perfect and neither are my kids, but here are some of the ways we try to respect others with our manners.
Always say "please" and "thank you"!
I know this is kinda obvious, but many kids still aren't using it! And for that matter, neither are adults. It's really simple, too! Teach your children not to demand something! It is so incredibly rude to be told "Give me"!
Don't roam the store!
Personal pet peeve, but come on! A young child needs to be taught how to act when out in public and if you don't expect them to be next to you while you are out shopping, then you are only asking for trouble! Trust me, the employees will thank you! As will other customers! Teach your child, starting at a young age, to have respect for others. It's not polite to let them run loose through the store, touching every item, yelling, screaming. Now, I understand that as a child grows they "should" be allowed more freedom, but freedom comes with responsibility.
When eating out, manners are even more important!
I can't tell you the number of times my family has been complimented because of how polite and proper they are when they're eating out. Numerous times I've been told by strangers how nice it was for them to be able to eat their meal in peace and quiet- even though there were young children sitting at the table beside them. It goes back to respect. Teach your children that they should respect those eating their own meal. We do this by being thankful for what we have, by using our quiet voices, and by enjoying each other's company!
We are quiet during church. We don't get up and down. We don't go to the bathroom a billion times. We don't shuffle papers or whisper. Around the age of 8, the children sit and pay full attention to the sermon. From around 5 or 6 to the age of 8, they can sit quietly and copy Bible verses during the sermon. It seems that from birth to the age of 5 I spend teaching them how to be quiet. My four year old occasionally has to take a potty break during the service and I do spend a fair about of time telling him to "be quiet" while he colors or plays with a hot wheel. He has really came a long ways from age 3 though and I know he'll mature a lot in the next year. It absolutely frustrates and hurts me to see kids get away with being noisy in church and nobody does anything about it. Yes, kids are noisy and aren't able to always sit still, but as a parent we should be teaching them how to respect others! Teach them not to shuffle papers or color too loudly. Teach them to sit in one spot and not get up a billion times! Teach them! Kids will be kids and most churches are okay with the noise that comes naturally, but try to keep it to a minimal!
Watch old shows like The Waltons and learn from them! Punishments were handed out fair, but tough. Parents weren't afraid to send kids to bed with no supper. If money was stolen, it was expected to be returned- even if it meant that a kid of 9 or 10 had to move the entire huge stack of firewood to uncover where the money was buried- all by himself. Children were part of the family and respect was taught from the parents. Grandparents were active in a child's life.
How do you teach kids about manners and respect?