Everyone (ok– everyone that reads my blog and FB posts anyway) knows that I am one of the few that say all this starts at home–YOU are your child’s first teacher… But I’ll admit, not many folks from certain areas, backgrounds or certain lifestyles have been taught simple “etiquette” at home. Not everyone had the fortunate upbringing where they were taught by their elders, how to respect their elders, open a door for a lady or even how to extend their hand when meeting someone for the first time.
Some I will give proper credit to for having tact and class, without being taught at home. These folks probably learned skills from watching and seeing how people outside the neighborhoods display these actions. They learned the “when in Rome” rule and found what is acceptable in society outside the “hood”. Some of the hood-rats do have manners. Some of them learned along the way how to treat each other civilly and how to respect life and others lives.
With the overcrowding of classrooms in Chicago and the suburbs it seems like its struggle enough that children are getting what they need in their core subjects at schools. Why aren’t manners just as important? A simple training on etiquette of how to treat each other. Should we want it in our schools whether you’re black, white, Hispanic, rich, poor, Republican, Democratic, WHATEVER?! Maybe, possibly, DEFINITELY!!
It’s time to implement etiquette classes in the schools. Whether your child attends a public, private, charter, boarding, upper-class, whatever, they ALL need it and they need it NOW.
Etiquette classes should be added as an additional subject in all schools of all grades– no, make that a requirement for graduation for every child. Sure it starts at home, of course it does, but it needs to continue, just like reading to your child, at school. As important as physical education and the arts are needed, so is etiquette training for every individual.
Teaching children etiquette at a young age is important. It’s not a teacher’s or the school system’s responsibility to bring it in the classroom, not yet anyway. In today’s society, especially here, in the rough City of Chicago, with all the crime and sad stories of children getting gunned down over stupid reasons, beat to death out of sheer anger, shot at, stomped on…the list goes on, shouldn’t it be part of the curriculum?
For children to learn simple lessons like:
If you need to borrow an item, always ask for permission first. If the owner of the item is not available to ask for permission, do not borrow the item. Never borrow or take anything without asking permission.
It is impolite to comment on the health or specific physical changes of another person. You may think the comment is positive, “Wow, your weight loss looks great”, but the other person might think you thought they needed to lose weight.
The use of deodorant is essential for good hygiene and personal grooming. Apply it daily. For some people, and depending on your activity level, more than once a day.
It doesn’t matter who makes the clothing or how much it costs. Do not embarrass anyone by announcing their clothing labels or judge them by the amount of money they spend on their clothing. What matters is good hygiene, good grooming, and appropriate attire.
If you approach a customer service counter and see an associate or customer service representative speaking with another customer, do not barge up to the counter and interrupt their conversation. It is appropriate to stand aside or behind them and wait for your turn.
It may sound silly or even comical but seriously, some adults don’t know any better so how do we expect our children to know any better?! Why do adults expect respect when they don’t teach respect?!
I would think (as I’m NOT an expert on the matter) that most problems in schools today are due to behavior problems and issues. Many children obtain an IEP (Individualized Education Plan– which is required by the State of Illinois if your child qualifies for it, by the way) for behavior issues while school aged. I would have to also guess that almost as many children that have IEP’s for non-behavioral reasons have these IEP’s for behavior. That’s a LOT of children to have issues with behavior. TOO MANY! And, if my self-made calculations are even near accurate, why isn’t the one thing that would probably help (not hinder) the problem of children acting out being implemented NOW in the schools? Cost?! Wouldn’t it simply be most cost effective as well as beneficial for our youth to learn now what they need to survive as adults and create a civil society instead of pay for their rehabilitation and commit them to alternative facilities or schools for behavior problems? Really?! There’s always a way…Why not just give it a try.
Social media, social skills, and society…whatever way you look at it, online or offline our society depends on etiquette. Let’s give our children ALL the necessary tools to be successful in life. Implement etiquette classes in school and see what happens when it turns out well behaved young people. You may just be surprised.
Let’s ALL as parents and citizens of a beautiful city continue the discussion further and see where it takes us. It can’t get any worse, can it?! We need some happiness to come from all the sadness.
Below are some links on the subject. Although I don’t agree with all the “conservative” comments, forcing into the military bolderdash, and a few other things on these websites I think it’s a pretty good start…Especially this link where Bill Gates gives his advice to kids.