Getting your child ready for preschool is an exciting milestone in a parent's life. You have their backpack ready and you bought their school supplies. However, have you thought about the things they need that don't cost money? One of the best things you can do to help your soon-to-be preschooler is to teach them manners. Not only will teaching manners to your toddler make their preschool years easier, these simple courtesies will follow them throughout their life. Below is a list of the most important manners that you should be teaching your child before they begin their schooling journey.
One of the most important things you can teach your child is how to address adults properly. Teaching your toddler to shake hands politely and address adults with titles and their last name is the best way to teach them how to identify those who are in authority.
You can teach your toddler how to address an adult by role playing with them. For example, you can offer your child clues like: "I am married to Mr. Jones." This will teach your child that there is a difference between "Ms." and "Mrs." Offer your hand in a greeting and have them do the same. Being able to identify authority and respect it will be very important to your child in their later years.
Accidents happen when you have children. Whether they accidentally hurt another child or they accidentally broke your favorite vase, it is important that they know how to apologize for their actions. Your child will learn how to apologize by following your example. If you apologize for your actions, unintentional or not, you are teaching your toddler how to take responsibility for their actions at a young age. This will also teach them that for every action there is a reaction and consequence. Children need to know this in order to be successful while going through school.
If your child makes a mistake, you must correct it right away and insist on an apology. If a child does not understand the power of consequences, they will push boundaries because they know they can get away with it. This will hinder their progress throughout preschool and even later on when they go out on their own.
It can be hard to teach a toddler patience, especially if they are an only child. Toddlers often look for instant gratification. They want what they want when they want it and not a moment later. This is normal but easy to fix. A child must know how to wait for their turn on the swing and how to wait for their turn in a lunch line. Teach your child that delayed gratification usually has the better end result.
Take your child to the park and take turns swinging on the swing. Show your child what it looks like to wait patiently. Little ones have a short attention span, so when you first start teaching them patience, start out small. Set your timer for three minutes and then swing for those three minutes. If your child patiently waits for you to finish, get off of the swing and let them have a turn. If they throw a fit, sit them in time out. Just like learning how to apologize properly, your child needs to know that there are consequences for not waiting patiently.
Preschool is an amazing milestone in both the parents' and child's life. While you may have all of the supplies they need for their journey, you also need to focus on the things that money can't by, like manners. Teaching manners to your toddler before they enter preschool will set a great precedent for the rest of their schooling years.
Contact a group like Learning Tree Schools for more help.