December 23, 2012

Teaching Manners during the Holidays

Ready or not, the holidays are here! In the next couple of weeks we will celebrate Christmas and New Year’s in a number of different ways. Most of us will attend at least one or two dinners/gatherings with family and friends with our children. Therefore, the holidays are the perfect time to work on your children’s manners.

Teaching children proper manners is a difficult thing to do, especially in today’s society where everything is about “me.” Plus, most of us don’t get together with large groups of people on a regular basis so it can be difficult to keep manners on your kids’ minds. This is what’s good about the holidays and all the festivities that go on during this time…there are numerous occasions (all within a short period of time) for our children to practice good manners. Below are a few ways you can take advantage of the holidays to teach your kids good manners.

1.      Making Introductions – There are always going to be new people coming into your children’s lives, making formal introductions necessary throughout their entire lives. It’s important for your children to learn how to introduce themselves, as well as, how to act when someone else has introduced them. So, make sure you introduce your children to guests at holiday functions and teach them to say, “it’s nice to meet you,” once you’ve introduced them. Then, if there are children there your children don’t know, teach them how to go up and introduce themselves.

2.      Proper Table Etiquette – While you don’t have to teach your kids how to eat like the Queen of England, it is important to teach your children how to behave properly while at the table with a group of people. Teach them how to ask someone to pass the salt and pepper instead of reaching for it. And, be sure to teach them how to properly hold their silverware and to take small bites.

3.      Saying Please and Thank You – If you aren’t able to teach your children anything else during the holiday season, make sure you teach them how to say please and thank you. This is so important. It’s amazing how many people I’ve purchased gifts for over the years (both kids and adults) without ever getting a simple “thank you” in return. In my opinion, that’s just rude and I don’t ever want my children perceived that way. I’m sure you don’t either, so make sure you teach your kids how to say please and thank you.

4.      Write Thank You Notes – Finally, sit down with your children and help them write thank you notes to the people who purchased gifts for them. This is another important trait that all kids should know how to do because it will follow them into adulthood, and in many cases, work in their favor…especially when applying for a job!

Have a Merry Christmas 2012 everyone!   From all of us at Pumpkin Formal, thanks for a great year!

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