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5 Etiquette Skills Not to Forget to Teach Our Children

Why couldn't someone come up with a list that includes every single thing we must teach our children before they turn 18?  Then we could just check them off as we went.  Are you laughing yet?  Nope, it doesn't really work like that.

There are many etiquette skills we sometimes just don't think to teach our children until we're in the moment and realize "Oops, I don't think we've talked about that."

Here are just a few of those:
  • It's never polite for your children to go to school, church, etc. with invitations to a birthday party or event unless they are inviting every single child in the school, church, etc.  What a heartbreak when one child sees other children receiving invitations, only to be passed by and left without one.  Unless you're inviting everyone, only mail or email invitations.
  • Have you taught your children what to do when the American flag is brought into a room or when the national anthem is played?  Too often I see these events happening and children are simply at a loss as to appropriate behavior.  Teach your children to stand when the flag is raised or brought into a room and to face the flag while standing when the national anthem is played.  Teach them that it's rude to talk or make noise when this is going on.  Although it's not necessary, you may place your hand over your heart during the national anthem.  Always be at attention.  To learn more considerations towards our flag, visit www.usa-flag-site.org
  • It's not polite to double dip.  If you take a bite of a chip, then it would be rude to take the half-eaten chip and re-dip it into a bowl of dip.  Maybe you do this in your own home, but you don't do this when eating in a public or with a group.
  • It's not polite to touch other people's babies or pets without their permission.  Many parents are very concerned about germs when it comes to their small children, so you should never assume it's alright to touch a child without the parent's permission.  With pets, its more of a safety issue to our own children, but regardless, you should always have permission.
  • It's not polite to walk through other people's yards, regardless of how careful you walk, without the property owner's permission.  This is more about respect than just about damaging someone's property.  Of course it's usually not damaging to someone's yard for someone to walk across it, but it's not polite to ever assume that the property owner doesn't mind.
It's polite when we keep our commitments.  If your children commit to being home at a certain time, then that's the time they should arrive.  If your child commits to cleaning his room, then a clean room should be had.

Helping your children learn to keep their commitments is one of the first steps to helping them become trustworthy, dependable adults, and what a gift that is.

All the Best,

Monica Irvine

Restroom Etiquette


It’s Time to Talk About It

Typically, ladies and gentlemen do not draw attention to anything that is gross, unappealing or the least bit offensive.  However, if we do not talk about this, I’m afraid the violation of this important etiquette rule will continue to cause distress to so many.

Here’s the etiquette rule:  It is polite for all ladies and gentlemen to leave the restroom clean and tidy.  

Recently, I was traveling on an airplane and excused myself to the restroom.  Upon opening the door,  I was met with such a scene that I can only presume you can imagine the scene, after I express that I was not able to bring myself to enter the facility.  The floor, the seat of the toilet was simply disgusting.

What is this?  Why?  How does it happen?  I really do not want anyone to answer these questions, but what I hope is that you and I make sure that we teach our children that it is our responsibility and duty to show respect to those who come after us, and leave restrooms clean and sanitary.  It really is all about respect.  It’s about whether or not we value others and other’s experiences.

Parents, please teach your sons and your daughters to be careful in a restroom.  And, if there is a mistake made, to clean it up.  Let’s teach them to pay attention, and to not be distracted when visiting the restroom.  Let’s explain why it is polite to be aware of how we use this facility with others in mind.  It’s not too much to ask.  Children are very capable of understanding and following this protocol.  The real question is, are adults?

Have a great month!

Monica Irvine