PARENTING: Politeness for Preschool
· Politeness includes refined language and caring behavior.
· Politeness means knowing and accommodating others.
· Kids need proper training for politeness.
· Etiquettes are part of politeness.
At a reputable school, no one can tell you the importance of good schooling better than a preschool teacher. We, teachers, appreciate the efforts on the part of parents that they make for the quality education and promising future of their kids. But we get really shocked when we listen to bad language from cute mouths coming from wealthy and educated families. Oay, main to tujh sey bhi achchi pencil ley aonga,……..Oay, ulloo,……Chal, tu to idhar aa na……….Teacher, tum kahan ja rahi hoo? See?? Oay, tu, chal, ulloo, tum (for elders). Here, all the best schooling goes in the dustbin when we see children speaking such language learned from their homes (most probably, from maids and servants). Obviously, the preschools always discourages such language, especially, not allowing them to speak slangs, but we cannot change their language environment at home. Now, if we don’t have parents’ cooperation in building up refined language, the child will develop a ‘hotchpotch’ of languages; a personal one, that is slang, and, a formal one that is standard, plus English. It again damages a child’s personality and character.
There is no substitute to politeness in life, whether it’s polite behaviors or polite language. It comes from within us when we learn to feel and care for others. We all know and should know about what WE want. That’s right for our children, too. However, at the same time we should learn and teach our kids about how to take good care of people around us; how to understand their needs, conditions, thinking, problems, and emotions, and, how to accommodate them. We can teach them so by sharing with them our feelings of joy and sadness, small problems, and little issues, and, should ask their suggestions and help. For instance, we won’t talk aloud/will watch TV at low volume as your dad is working/your brother is sleeping/your sister is studying/your granny is not well/your mom is praying. We will not bang the doors/clutter the utensils on the table/put the things quietly on their places etc. as the noise pollution disturbs the people around us. Help your mom/sister carry the bags/chairs as you are the son/strong young man. I am tired/busy today, will you help your brother in doing his homework. These small actions are not small in their effects. In fact, on one hand, they strengthen the family bonding, and, on the other hand, they develop empathy and compassion for others, self confidence, thoughtfulness, and, wisdom and skills for handling daily matters. That’s how we give their lives a positive direction. Similarly,we can teach them to respect and taking care of others when there is difference of opinion/culture/religion. We should raise them in a way, where they have full faith and confidence in the truth of their religion, good values and culture. But they should know that there is variety of people, thoughts, religions and cultures. So, we have to respect and care for others without losing confidence in ourselves.
Good manners and etiquettes are essential part of politeness. Saying ‘Salam’ to each and every family member at home whenever they get up from sleep/when someone comes to them or they go to someone. Magic words make our relationships stronger as, thanks, sorry, excuse me, may I help you? etc. Similarly, table and eating etiquettes awareness of how to dress up nicely (avoiding bare-footedness), taking turns when speaking (avoiding cross-talks), standing up and leaving place for elders at home and outside, respectful to elders and kind and friendly to younger ones, etc. Also, they should be taught to handle negative situations positively. For example, sometimes they get annoyed to see their naughty cousins/friends who destroy their toys and things. Here, instead of getting angry on their arrival, they should be able to find solution to the issue. They can be told to keep away their toys/books and make their cousins/friends busy in watching cartoons/ cycling/ outdoor games, etc. Also, kids should be allowed to say anything they want, but nicely and politely, whether they are kids or elders. If their language is impolite and tone is rude, they should be helped by their parents to rephrase it politely. Politeness in their language and behavior will, no doubt, increase their patience, sensibility, charm and influence.