Teaching Manners--It Still Matters: How to Teach Good Manners

Socially Graceful Grade-Schoolers: Ages 7-8

Big kids have the capacity to understand how others feel and are concerned about what people think of them. This is when it all should come together.

WHAT TO WORK ON

Phone skills. Because we all use cell phones your kid may not get much practice picking up calls, but it still matters. Teach your child how to do this as soon as he can remember a message. When he answers he can simply say "Hello." If you can't get to the phone teach him to say "May I tell her who's calling, please?" or "I'm sorry -- my mom's not available right now. May I take a message?"

Cutting food with a knife. Here's a helpful technique: Tell your kid to put both hands out, palms up. Lay the knife across the fingers of her right hand, pointing out; have her hold the handle with her thumb. She should hold the fork in her left hand the same way. When she turns her hands over, she's ready to cut. "Tell your child it's best to cut one piece of meat at a time, instead of all of it at once.

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