The taming of the toddler

Filed under: Toddlers Preschoolers, Nutrition: Health, Development/Milestones: Babies, Childcare, Day Care & Education

As a rule, toddlers are a fairly uncivilized bunch. They bellow whenever they feel so inclined. Gaseous emissions are commonplace anywhere they happen to be. Food flinging is not out of place. You get the idea. So just when is the best time to introduce some civility into their lives?

I decided that it would be prudent to take the cue from Devon's preschool before I tried taming his wild ways. Luckily for us, he attends a lovely Montessori school that emphasizes manners and common courtesy. I have been touched as anything to hear him say, in a sweet, inside voice, things like, "Here, your turn now." Or "'Scuse me, Mai-Mai," when he collides with me at high speeds. But what I find even better are his table manners. No more food flinging in our dining room. He says grace, or his version of it, before every meal. The best part is that Devon now drinks out of a topless cup without pouring the contents over the edge of the highchair and into the mouths of thirsty dogs.

I have had a fairly easy time of it with Devon's manners manily because his preschool has been such a help. The teachers are patient and willing to spend as much time at the lunch table as needed to show the kids just what is polite and acceptable. Their examples have enabled me to continue with their teachings at home. How about you?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.