Good Manners at Home
Updated: Jul 8
Children take great pride in being able to behave in ways adults often expect, but may have forgotten to teach them. Grace and Courtesy is an important tenant of the Montessori philosophy and is included in the Practical Life curriculum: how to carry a chair and put it down quietly, how to walk and talk quietly, how to greet a visitor, how to not interrupt, and so much more.
How can parents continue this learning at home? Here are some ideas:
Greeting family: Greet each other calmly and individually. Make eye contact and include a personalized greeting (an elbow bump, an air hug). This connection will give you a great start to a new day.
Greet your child: Each time you see your child, greet them. Make your good-byes specific and personal. You’re modeling this behavior for your child so that she will copy it when she’s not with you.
Table Manners: The table is another important place to practice respect. Remind your child to wait for everyone to be seated before beginning to eat, ask for something to be passed, don’t talk with food in their mouth, use a napkin or paper towel to wipe their mouth, and ask to be excused before leaving the table.
Please and Thank You: Include these phrases in your daily conversation. Gentle reminder you child about the “magic words” if they forget. If your child hears you using these phrases to other people all the time, they will pick up on it.
Practice Family Rules: Establish and practice rules that help avoid conflict: waiting your turn, knocking on closed doors before coming in, not interrupting someone who is busy, and others that will help keep your household running smoothly.