August - Manners #2

Observations . . .

There was a quote once heard from a school counselor, “He’s not a bad kid, he just has bad habits.” There is a lot of wisdom to that statement. All kids (all people for that matter) are good. It’s their actions, many of which could be the result of habits that are bad. We never want a teacher, coach, friend, relative or school counselor saying that about our child, so what are we going to do about it? 

Unfortunately, habits are often relegated to the “bad” category. How often do we hear or say, “She has a bad habit of…?” It’s time to focus our attention on the “good” habits in life. One of the best ways to rid oneself of “bad” habits is to practice “good” habits. The more we focus on our own and our child’s good manners, the more the “bad” will become nonexistent. 

Dinner Practice

The dinner table is a great classroom for learning and practicing manners. If you don’t already, why not begin using acceptable table manners when you gather as a family. If you need to brush up on table manners, there are lots of websites and videos available to help. 

Simple Gestures

We don’t need to turn our family meals into staunch formal affairs, but surely, we can take advantage of teachable moments to help our children know what to do at the table with their napkin, silverware, plates, the food they eat, and even their posture. The best way to accomplish this is to first model proper behavior for our children and then to kindly show them what is proper and what is not. 

Next week – a Manners challenge!

S. Ciara Mitaro

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