Social Manners for Children - By Susan Dunn, The EQ Coach
By all reports, adults are becoming ruder, and children aren`t learning manners
either. 82% of Americans polled think children`s manners are worse today than when
they were children, and they`re concerned.
In order to respect himself or herself, a child needs to learn to respect their
parents first. Manners and respect are inseparable. Here`s a great book to introduce
your child to the subject of manners "What Do You Say Dear," by Seslye Joslin. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0064431126/susandunnmome-20>"What
Do You Say, Dear," by Joslin, and some tips on how to get started.
1. Start by modeling.
If you want your child to treat you with respect, then treat your child with
respect. Your child must see you setting a good example.
2. No interrupting adult conversation unless dire emergency after the age of
3. Addressing adults by their titles, not by their first names.
4. No throwing of temper tantrums when things don`t go their way.
5. Teach one skill at a time.
Start with telephone manners, then progress to table manners, or vice versa.
6. Catch them doing it right and praise them.
Learning skills like these takes constant reinforcement, particularly if they
are around other children who are unmannerly. Praise your child often (and specifically)
even after they seem to have mastered it.
7. Be patient with lapses; it takes a lot of repetition.
Don`t reprimand the child in public, however; this would be bad manners on your
8. If the child plainly forgets, you can ask a question which will prompt them.
If he forgets to extend his hand when meeting an adult say quietly, "What do
we do when we meet someone older?" This gives the child the chance to be smart and
remember and feel good!
9. Order http://www.psow.com/manners.html>Modern Manners For Children, a mail-order
program developed by the experts at The Protocol School of Washington?, for children
10. Read some of the books available on manners for children. Here are some:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0064431126/susandunnmome-20>"What Do You
Say, Dear," by Joslin; http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0764150839/susandunnmome-20>"Ooops,
Excuse me, Please," by McGrath; http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0736901280/susandunnmome-20>
"A Little Book of Manners for Boys," by Barnes; or http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/031214122X/susandunnmome-20>"Elbows
Off the Table, Napkins in the Lap," by Wallace.
Susan Dunn, The EQ Coach, coaches
clients in emotional intelligence, and offers workshops, presentations, Internet
courses, and ebooks. Visit her on the web at www.susandunn.cc
and mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org for FREE ezine.
Cross-Cultural Adoption: The Do?s and Don?ts for Grown-Ups - By Amy Coughlin
and Caryn Abramowitz
Do treat her like any other kid. It may be difficult and take a while for adopted
children to feel like they belong within their extended families. Treating these
children like they?re ?nothing special? can go a long way toward making them feel
at home and comfortable within the group.
Avoid the temptation to spoil her because she didn?t have everything that the
other kids had in the first few months or years of her life. The most valuable gifts
you can offer these children are patience, routine, and consistency -- and most
of all, unexaggerated expressions of love and devotion.
Do support her when curious strangers ask questions. When curious (and sometimes
thoughtless) strangers ask questions or feel the need to comment on the circumstances
of the adoption, do not let them lead you into uncomfortable territory. Instead,
gently steer them back to more suitable small talk or respond in such a way that
shifts the conversation to positive adoption language that in turn lets the child
know that you are on her side.
Do respect her privacy. Adopted children have the same need for and the right
to privacy as you do. They do not want their entire life story being told to strangers.
If she hears you discussing the intimate details of her origins, she will likely
feel embarrassed. Until the child is old enough to decide for herself how much information
she would like to share regarding her background, please respect her privacy.
Do treat prospective adoptive parents the same as expectant parents. Adopting
a child is just as exciting for soon-to-be parents as being pregnant. They feel
the same way all expectant parents do -- overjoyed, overwhelmed, nervous, impatient,
and most of all, excited. Don?t be afraid to ask adopting parents about these feelings.
After all, adoption is neither a secret nor a source of embarrassment or shame.
Do acknowledge and celebrate the differences. One of the best things you can
do to show your support as well as your love for the adopted child in your life
is to learn a bit about the culture and history of her birth country. Read a couple
of books, especially travel books. Even if you have no plans to travel there, there
is no better way to get the feeling of another country.
Don?t introduce her as adopted. The pain this inflicts on the child is obvious.
The child is made to feel inferior, like she will never be considered a real part
of the family. The rule is simple: Don?t ever, ever do this.
Don?t say how ?lucky? she is. After hearing this enough times, the child can
be made to feel like a lifelong charity case, rather than the cherished child she
is. Yes, she is lucky, but so is any child who has a supportive, loving family.
And we parents are lucky, too, to have been able to create this loving, supportive
Don?t assume adoption is a second choice. The reasons people choose to adopt
are as varied and unique as the people themselves. While it is true that many choose
adoption because of infertility, it is also true that many choose adoption for a
myriad of other reasons as well. Many people choose to adopt not because they are
out of other options, but rather because they believe that adoption is the best
choice for them.
Don?t jump to conclusions about the birth mother. Often thought of as weak, irresponsible,
cheap, and worthless, birth mothers often suffer a lifetime of pain far greater
than that of childbirth. Please don?t jump to the wrong conclusion that these women
are any different than you and me or that they love their children any less.
Most cross-cultural adoptive families know little or nothing about the circumstances
that led their child?s birth mother to relinquish her child. What they do know is
that they love their children?s birth mothers because they are a part of their children
and it is because of them that their beloved children are who they are.
Don?t tell us we?re sure to have ?our own? now. She is our own. Those parents
who choose adoption because of infertility do not secretly harbor lifelong yearnings
for a biological child. Having ?our own? is now irrelevant; the child we have is
the one we want and it is inconceivable that we could love or want any child more.
Like all parents, we have the best.
Copyright ? 2004 Amy Coughlin and Caryn Abramowitz
Amy Coughlin is an adoptive mom,
a lawyer, teacher, and writer. She lives in Center City, Philadelphia, with her
husband, Rich, and their two daughters, Audrey and Natalie.
Caryn Abramowitz is a freelance writer and editor. She is a lawyer by trade and
the author of many legal and other types of articles in a variety of publications.
She lives in Philadelphia with her husband, Andy, and their daughter Chloe.
They are the authors of Cross-Cultural Adoption: How to Answer Questions from
Family, Friends, and Community published by LifeLine Press; September 2004; $18.95US/$26.95CAN;
For more information, please visit www.writtenvoices.com.
Children articles index
- Brains on Fire: The Multimodality of Gifted Thinkers - By Brock Eide
- laying Baby Computer Games ? The New Parent-Child Tradition? - By Emma
- Book Excerpt: Einstein Never Used Flash Cards - By Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Ph
- Putting Fun Into Parenting - By David Stoepker, Psy.D., & Erin Brown Con
- Preparing Your Child for a High-Tech Future - By Sue Sato
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - Predominantly Inattentive
- Abandonment - By Sonya Green
- Explaining Suicide to Children - by Tracy Pierson
- Our Children`s Needs - by Robert Elias Najemy
- How to Develop Self-Esteem in Children - By J. Bailey Molineux, Ph.D.
- Helping Children Overcome Stress and Fear - By Debbie Milam
- Do you Shout at YOUR children? - By James Middleton
- Book Excerpt: Helping Children with Autism Learn - By Bryna Siegel,
- SPEED SPELLING: Another way to use speed reading skills for "schoolwork&q
- Children and Stress - By Laura Silva Quesada
- Boundaries- Why Are They Needed? - by Derek Randel & Gail Randel M.D.
- Juggling Home
- Explaining World tragedy to Children - By Chick Moorman and Thomas Ha
- Children and Pessimism - By Carol Tuttle
- Loving Yourself, Loving Your Children - By Margaret Paul, Ph.D.
- Social Manners for Children - By Susan Dunn, The EQ Coach
- The Sexual Abuse of Children - By J. Bailey Molineux
- A Few Simple Truths About ADHD and Stimulant Drugs - By Steve Edelman1,
- DYSLEXICS and A.D.D. KIDS BECOME GIFTED SPEED READERS - by George Stanc
- Using Feng Shui for Better Behaved Children - By Kathryn Weber
- Book Excerpt: Helping Children with Autism Learn - By Bryna Siegel,
- Five Keys to Raising Nonviolent Children - By Tammy Cox, LMSW
- The Best Way to Reduce Stress: Start Young - By Zach Brull
- Your Child?s Self-Esteem is in The Cards - By Susan Howson
- Calming Tips for Hyperactive Children - By Jeannine Virtue
- What is ADHD? - By Jeannine Virtue
- Talking to Your Children About Sex - By Jan Andersen
- How Our Children Really Learn And Why They Need To Play More And Memo
- HOW DO WE PROTECT OUR CHILDREN FROM PREDATORS? - By Linda J Alexander,
- Teach Children Positive Self-Image Through Fitness - By Lynn Bode
- No Invitation Needed -- Part 3 of 3 Sacred Children Series - By Skye T
- Helping Our Children Feel Good About Themselves - By Dr.Barbara Becker Hol
- Unidentified Stepfamily Zones - Discoveries Made at a Stepfamily Confer
- Divorce and Children: Things To Consider When You`re Staying Married
- Six facts you should know to empower your teaching. - By Emmanuel
- Are You in an Abusive Situation? - by Colin Gabriel Hatcher & Randall
- The Divorce Revolution Has Failed - By J. Bailey Molineux
- Is Your Child Well-Mannered? - By Mary Jesse
- Jesus` Birthday -- Part 2 of 3 Sacred Children Series - By Skye T
- Empty Nesters: What Should You Do Once the Children Leave? - By Mary Guar
- We should celebrate the diversity of children and adults - By Robyn M
- How to Cope with Back to School Stress - By Debbie Mandel
- HIS KIDS: BECOMING A W.O.W. STEPMOTHER - by Julie Donner Andersen
- ADD / ADHD Children : Being Your Child`s Best Friend - By Kate Hufst