Begin with teaching them to say “hello” and “goodbye.”
These two phrases are the first steps towards polite interactions with people. You can incorporate it in your everyday lives by saying “hello” or “good morning” each day. When your child starts to adapt it, try making them say hello to friends and family. If they skip saying a hi, gently remind them.
This way, children can learn these polite phrases before even knowing how to speak sentences.
Teach them to say “please” when asking for something.
“Please” can be incorporated in their vocabulary by reminding them to say it every time they need something. If you use “please” often in front of them or while talking to them, chances are they’ll also get the hang of it.
Teaching them the importance of “thank you” is also necessary.
Expressing gratitude is one of the most important qualities in a person. Teach your child when and why is it important to say “thank you”. Gently remind them to say thank you whenever they receive a gift, or find a solution to something by someone. Teach them to say thank you when someone helps them.
You can try incorporating this while playing or during day-to-day activities like when you give them food or help them with something.
Build in them the habit of sitting straight and eating without creating a mess.
Children usually love to play with food and keep running while you feed them. However, this not only encourages a bad habit but also decreases the absorption of food. Thus, make it a habit in them to sit straight at one place while eating. You can try building this habit by making them a part of fixed lunch and dinner times when the whole family eats together. This will encourage them to follow what elders are doing around.
Develop in them the ability to make good eye contact during conversations.
Making an eye contact is an essential element of effective communication for everyone. Developing this good habit in children can help them greatly in the long run. Also, since children are usually diverted with games and other fun things, it is often hard for them to talk to a person while making eye contact. They can even offend others with this distracted way of conversation.
You can develop this habit with them while talking at home. For instance, not talking to them until they make an eye contact and letting them know the reason for doing so. You can also remind them by saying, “Do you want to look at me while talking,” and similar things.
Teach them to not interrupt people during conversations.
Help your child to understand that while talking to one or more than one people, they should wait for their turn. Make them understand that people won’t listento them if they interrupt in between an ongoing conversation. This will also help them to be patient and listen to what others have to say
Acts of kindness go a long way, teach them to be kind.
Educate your child about the importance of empathy, compassion, care and kindness. Teach them the difference it makes to be kind with practical activities while playing. Develop in them the ability to see the other person’s perspective while disagreements or arguments. If they quarrel with friends or siblings, teach them how it must have been for the person on the other side.
Also, develop in them little acts of kindness they can do towards the community. How they can help others, etc. can be taught by doing volunteering services.
Set clear expectations.
Rather than simply telling your child to not do something, teach them what to do instead. Tell them why something should not be done and why they should do the good thing instead. Explaining the reasons and the purpose to them can avoid confusion. This will also help them to develop the capability to differentiate between right and wrong in the long run.
Maintain a consistent expectation from what you teach your child. If you’re trying to build a habit in them, keep a check on them of whether they are following it or not. Keep reminding them from time to time if they forget keeping up with a particular habit. One of the best ways to do so effectively is by focusing on not more than two habits at a time. Once they get the hang of the two habits you’re trying to develop, then proceed towards the next habits. This will keep them consistent.