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Kids and Respect (Do Unto Others)

Every parent wants their child to have respect. Going about getting them to show it can, at times, be a challenge, even for the most patient of parents. Grade school kids are often striving to show a little independence. They will at times talk back in a disrespectful way to try to get it, making this is a good age to start laying the foundation for positive parenting and respectful years to come. Getting kids to show respect is more than just an issue at home, although that is where it starts. They need to be respectful with their teachers, coaches, other parents, or even when dining out. Learning to be respectful is a skill that can help them for a lifetime.

To teach your child to be respectful, consider these parenting tips:

  • Be a good role model. This is the best possible way to show kids how to be respectful. Often when parents get frustrated, they talk to their kids in ways they would never talk to other children or adults. A good rule of thumb is if you wouldn't say it with company around, you probably shouldn't say it at all.
  • Give your child the chance to speak and voice their opinions. Be polite and listen to them, even if you don't agree with what they are saying. That will teach them to be polite and do the same to others.
  • If you hear your child being disrespectful, call them on it and ask how they could say it in a respectful way. Role playing can also be an effective way to teach them how to go about asking for things in a respectful manner.
  • When children have habit of being disrespectful, tackle the problem by using positive reinforcement. You can do this by using a behavior chart and giving them a check mark each time they are respectful in communicating. After so many earned check marks, reward their behavior.

Positive Parenting Mantra: Do Unto Others

If you can help kids to understand that they don't like being disrespected, they will have a better idea of why others don't like it either. When parents make it their mission to treat their kids, as well as other people, with the same level of respect that they want to receive back, kids will be more likely to follow them. With some consistency and good role modeling, most kids will learn to be respectful.