Manners & Etiquette Your Kids Should Know
Society has gone through many changes in the name of progress. Many modernizations are wonderful and have resulted from technological advances associated with the dramatic electronic revolution unfolding before our very eyes. But in this writer’s opinion, some aspects of society are timeless and should never be changed or discarded.
Manners and etiquette are one of the defining characteristics of our culture. The absence of these qualities creates a void that is filled with, at the very least, a perception of disrespect and rudeness. Teach your children to be polite, show respect, and display manners and etiquette both at home and in public! You’ll be surprised how many people will notice, welcome and compliment their behavior!
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it is a good beginning…
- When answering adults, respond to them as “Ma’am” and “Sir”.
- Don’t call adults by their first names.
- Look people in the eye when you are having a conversation with them.
- Learn to shake hands as a greeting. Offer a firm handshake, not a weak fish. Yuck!
- Don’t roll your eyes when asked to do something.
- Don’t pass gas in public.
- Don’t burp out loud in public.
- Don’t put your elbows or arms on the table when you’re eating. Use one hand for eating and put the other one in your lap.
- Don’t chew your food with your mouth open. Close your lips to chew.
- Don’t talk with food in your mouth.
- Put your napkin in your lap when you’re at the table. Use it to wipe your mouth after you eat.
- Don’t leave your dishes or trash on the table when you have finished eating.
- Excuse yourself from the dinner table before getting up, especially if others are still eating.
- Wait until everyone has been served their meal before you begin to eat.
- Don’t talk on the phone or text at the dinner table (or breakfast or lunch)!
- Open doors for people and allow them to enter before you do.
- Always remember “ladies first”.
- When you are invited to a party or event and asked to RSVP, that means you MUST let the people know if you are coming or if you are not coming.
- If someone gives you a gift (even if you don’t like it), write them a thank you note.
- Say “thank you” when someone does something for you – no matter how small it is.
- When someone tells YOU “thank you”, don’t EVER say “no problem”. The correct response is “you are welcome”!!!!
- Don’t gossip.
- Don’t stare at people.
- Don’t laugh at people.
- Don’t blow your nose in public.
- Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough.
- Wash your hands often, and especially after going to the bathroom or sneezing/coughing.
- Don’t get into other people’s things without their permission – unless you have a search warrant.
- Brush your teeth when you wake up, after you eat and before you go to bed. Nobody wants to smell your bath breath.
- Bathe daily.
- Keep your promises.
- Don’t lie. Period.
- Don’t take your shoes off in public if your feet stink.
- Don’t smack your gum.
- Don’t interrupt when someone else is talking – unless the house is on fire or something equally important!