Teaching good manners to preschoolers may seem like a daunting task. After all, it seems as if their natural inclination is to be insensitive, inconsiderate, and self-centered. However teaching kindness, respect, thoughtfulness, and common courtesy will help your preschooler get along better with classmates, teachers, and family members. These important life skills will help your child become more aware of others and less selfish. By learning what is socially acceptable and responsible behavior, your preschooler will be more confident in his interactions with adults and his peers.
Begin with the following manners and advance as your child grows and matures.
1. Saying “Please,” “Thank you,” and “Excuse me”
2. Giving and accepting compliments
3. Taking turns
4. Being a good sport
5. Doing favors
6. Not interrupting
7. Making and accepting apologies
9. Waiting in line
10. Table manners
Keep in mind that you cannot simply tell your preschooler what to say or how to act. You must model good manners yourself, and encourage consistency and repetition. Lavish on the praise and give rewards for any attempts at remembering to use proper manners. Good manners won’t happen overnight, but with enough practice and positive reinforcement, they will eventually become automatic.
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