When Teaching Children Respect, Here Are Five Ways to Remember
How to Teach Your Child Respect and Discipline
Parents wonder why children nowadays are so rude and disrespectful toward their elders and peers. We see kids yelling at their mom in the grocery store, we hear teens using foul language. And occasionally, we witness toddler expressing their emotions by throwing a fist at whoever is next to them.
What to do with this rude behavior?
Fortunately, we can teach our children this important value—and it starts right among ourselves. For children mirrors everything we say or do. In fact, according to Victoria Kindle Hodson, coauthor of Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids, “The most effective way to teach kids respectful behaviour is to model it yourself.” However, teaching kids respect goes beyond walking the walk. There are a lot of techniques and activities to teach respect to children—and some of them are written down below.
Teach Good Manners
It is of every parent’s dream to have polite cutie who says excuse me thank you and please when interacting with other people. After all, children learn 95% from what is modelled to them. So if your little one acts rude, it reflects back to you as his or her parent. As early as two years old, you can teach your toddler to say thank you when he or she receives anything, and to say please whenever he or she asks for something. After several months of instilling these valuable qualities in your child, this polite behavior should come naturally. However, you must be prepared to provide reminders and gentle nudges every now and then.
Instead of saying, “Pick up your toys,” try “John, will you pick up your toys?” Make it a point to use the name of the person that you are talking to at every opening of each request. How nice would it be to hear your child say, “Mom, may I…” or “Dad, would you…? Including this polite manners as part of teaching respect to kids will your set your kid for life because everyone wants to be around a polite and respectful person over a butthead one.
Never Tolerate Discourtesy
Back talking and bratty behavior are so common nowadays that sometimes it is easier to let it slide. However, if you allow your child to act like a spoiled brat, he or she will come to believe that it is an acceptable behavior to lash out on other people. Next time you hear your child screaming at his or her sibling, or at you, help your child put his feelings into words, and create statements like, “I feel disappointed” rather than, “You are dumb!”
Team Up with Your Partner
Whenever adults interact with each other, the children listen. They observe. And when they are old enough to speak words, they will parrot everything that they have heard or seen. That is why it is important that you and your partner are on the same page when it comes to teaching respect for children. Take a seat and have a meaningful conversation about what your goals are, your plan of attack, and consequences that you will give to your child, should he or she breaks the rules. Lastly, make sure that both of you treat each other with respect.