Three simple expressions and yet we don't hear them enough.... "Please", "Thank-you" and "Excuse me". Why is it so hard to teach these to our children? It really isn't, it just requires commitment and consistancy. When the children are very, very young take the time to start teaching them to say these appropriately and very often. It is amazing how fast they can learn. Yes, you will be reminding them for the next 18 years, but that is okay. Learning is not an overnight process!!
Start at a very young age. When a young toddler is reaching for a cracker or a toy, say," Johnny, say "please"." This may seem usless at this age, but believe me, it is instilling a habit into your child and it will stick! The same goes with saying "Thank-you'. It alway does my heart good when, after dinner at our house, my little 2 year old granddaughter comes to where I am sitting and says,"Gwamma, fank you for the dinner."Aww, how sweet! Yes, it is true that her parents had to remind her to say it, but it will pay off in the long run. You are teaching a child to be respectful to those who are caring for them, who have supplied their needs,or who have given them something special. They are being taught to think of others. This is also helping them to learn to be thankful to the One who created everything in this world... our God. This is something none of us can do too much of.. being thankful to the Creator of the whole universe.
Have you ever been standing with a group of people and suddenly one or more children come running right through the middle of the group? Did they say "excuse me", or go around the group? Nope, right through the very middle! Chidren need to be taught very early that this is not acceptable. If there is no other way around, they should slow down and quietly but clearly say "excuse me" and then walk, not run, through the crowd. Children should be taught to asked to be excused when they leave the table after a meal. They should asked to be excused if they have to interrupt a conversation. Each and every time you teach these simple acts of politeness to your children, you are teaching them to respect others.