Social Graces-Teaching Your Kids Good Manners

by Margielynn

How do your kids do with their social graces? It is an unending job for parents to teach their kids manners. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

You should start teaching your kids manner at the age when they understand what you are saying, this will differ from child to child. They will need constant coaching and reminders to use their manners, but the end results of your hard work will be rewarding. A ‘’do as I say, not as I do’’ approach to manners does not work with children. Children must see you setting a good example for manners. Here are a few basic to get you started.

Thank You is Always in Style!

Thank you

Bacis Manners

  1. Saying, ''Please'', ''Thank you'' and ''You're welcome often, it shows respect and appreciation.
  2. Not interrupting when other people are speaking, waiting their turn. A thought pops into their head and they want to blurt it out.
  3. Clean up your mess, at home and other places you visit. This one may take some reminders.
  4. Showing good sportsmanship, no matter if you lose or win. If they lose, don't sulk or get mad, but be a good sport to the winner.
  5. Always say, ''Hello'' or ''hi'' when someone visits your home so that the guest feels welcome.
  6. No name calling, that can hurt people.
  7. Opening doors when going into buildings, allow elders to go first and open the door for them.

Books for Good Manners

Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly...
W. W. Norton & Company
$45.00  $15.89
Elbows Off the Table, Napkin in the L...
St. Martin's Griffin
$22.99  $4.77
Manners at the Table (Oh, Behave!)
Only $10.35

Basic Table Manners

  1.  Eat your food with your utensils unless the food is meant to be eaten with fingers. Just babies eat with fingers.
  2. Don't put too much food in your mouth at once, you could choke and it looks terrible.
  3. Don't reach over someone's plate for something, ask nicely that food is passed to you.
  4. Use a napkin to wipe your mouth, put the napkin on your lap when not in use. Do not use your napkin to blow your nose, leave the table if you must do this.
  5. Chew your food with your mouth closed and no talking with your mouth full.
  6. No ''double-dipping,'' slurping, licking fingers or sticking your fingers into food to taste!
  7. Always thank the cook for the meal they prepare for you, at home or a friend's house.

Tips for the Parents!

  • Gentle, no yelling or screaming, reminders reinforcing the manners will have to be constantly.
  •  Praise your child when they use their manners.
  •  Final results will be worth all of the repetitive encouragement you do over and over.
  •  Do not reprimand a child's social errors in public; take them aside in private for correction.
  •  Set an example for children.


  • You will end up with a well-behaved child that you will be so proud to call your own!
Updated: 01/21/2018, Margielynn
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Margielynn on 09/21/2017

Yes Frank, girls love parties! They have a place in Texas, but it is geared for children, they can have birthday parties or whatever and they have a proper tea party!

frankbeswick on 09/21/2017

There was a television programme some years ago about life in Cornwall, one of whose showings featured a short piece about a group of young women whose business involves running elegant tea parties with fine china for refined ladies. My daughter and I were in the room when this piece was shown. She had not shown much interest in the previous feature about farming, but when it moved onto tea parties with fine china she said happily,"This is what I like" and watched avidly until the piece finished.

Margielynn on 09/20/2017

Yes it does! When one of my granddaughter's graduated high school she wanted me to give her a grown up tea party! It turned out great!

Veronica on 09/20/2017

I have had several afternoon teas this summer for my birthday and did one for Frank's wife's birthday too. I used proper China with blue flowers and baked and baked plus making dainty sandwiches. It really does inspire elegance and genteel behaviour.

Margielynn on 09/20/2017

I loved my time with the granddaughters they are all now grown!

katiem2 on 09/19/2017

I do love fancy tea service and having two daughters they too have always enjoyed high tea. My oldest daughter still dresses up fancy for tea. It is a cherished time honored tradition I adore above all else. It is always a good time for a spot of tea. I love it that you have tea with your grandchildren and pass on good manners. Any tea time is GOOD bonding time.

Margielynn on 08/23/2017

Katiem2 When my grandchildren were young we had tea parties and I would give them tips on manners, I bet your tea time is more sophicated than ours!

Margielynn on 08/23/2017

DerdriuMarriner so glad you got a good laugh, that was good for you! Manner do not seem to be in style, hope it gets back in style soon!

katiem2 on 08/22/2017

I am a huge advocate for manners and proper etiquette. It only takes a little attention to detail and setting a good example. Tea is a ritual we enjoy and a great way to establish good social graces.

DerdriuMarriner on 08/22/2017

Margielynn, Have you noticed a trend of people not saying "You're welcome" or saying "I'm fine, thank you" and not asking how the other person is?
This is horrible but I couldn't stop laughing over your statement "you could choke and it looks terrible" since that's so effective with kids who don't mind making faces but don't want to be immortalized on camera doing so.

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