Mind your manners. This was a phrase that so many of us heard growing up. From behaviors demonstrated in public, many of us question if manners are a thing of the past, especially with children.
We have all watched enough reality TV and gone to places where children run free to have wondered at least once if some parents bother to teach their children manners at all.
A comment from a stranger about Stella's manners prompted my thinking on this topic. It was a positive comment, after her swim lesson, when the desk clerk remarked on how nicely she asked for her snack. Stella had simply used the word "please." I found it curious that use of this word actually earned positive praise. In my mind, it goes with the territory.
However, I have been around enough little ones (and some big ones) to know that many of our youngsters have not been taught manners. They ask for things without so much as a please or thank you; and they get them.
Around our house, Stella does not get anything without saying please.
It is never too early to start teaching your little one manners. As soon as they can ask for things, they should be taught how to ask for them. It shouldn't stop there. "Excuse me", "God Bless You", "I'm sorry" and "Your welcome" are also part of Stella's vocabulary. As is my personal favorite, "May I be excused, please?"
I realize I am bragging about something that I cannot take full credit for. Stella's day care provider deserves much of the credit for Stella being a polite child. They are taught manners in that environment and those manners are imposed. However, the hubby and I have to do our parts as well. We have to enforce and more importantly, we have to model.
There are so many times during the day when I come into contact with rude adults. Times that would prove to be much more pleasant if accompanied with a "Thank you" or a simple "Excuse me." I wonder if anyone ever taught those people manners.
And I remember my role as a parent. Society will thank me later.
Mommy is a sucker for manners...and she knows it.