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Good Manners- teaching a child to NOT interrupt!
Interrupt your Child’s Interruption Habit because Good Manners are Important.
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Trying to teach your child not to interrupt can be a lesson in frustration.
I know from experience because we have been working on this so so long.
Telling them there’s a time to interrupt (in case of a fire or if someone is hurt) and a time to not interrupt isn’t enough. But putting these rules into practice is easier said than done, especially for a very verbal or high-energy kid. (Like my 4-year-old!)
That’s why I thought I would share my experience with you and some helpful resources!
-First of all, set a reasonable expectation. I love the idea that my child is supposed to put her hand on me while I am talking to let me know she needs me but I’m just going to be honest here.. It hasn’t worked 100% yet. Children have a difficult time holding their thoughts for more than a few minutes. Show them as best as you can that you’ll be with them as soon as possible and then keep that promise.
-Develop some ideas for them to occupy themselves while you’re on the phone or otherwise talking to someone. Keep a box full of puzzles, crayons, colorful markers or other quiet toys that they can reach and use when you have to make a call or are talking to an adult. Also, having a designated spot for snacks and drinks on an accessible level so they don’t have to interrupt you for help. These are a great idea and are small ->Here
-Reading is a great tool to teach manners. I have found several books on the subject and you can read them together. Discuss them afterwards with your child and see what they learned from the story and how they’ll handle a similar situation in their life the next time it comes up. Just a few to look at ->HERE & HERE.
-And as always, children learn what they see. And let me tell you they see EVERYTHING. Your child cannot learn to not interrupt if they hear you, your spouse or their siblings constantly interrupting each other. So, It may be a good idea to refresh everyone in the home how important manners are when someone else is talking. Saying “excuse me” is a great way to let adults know when children need to communicate.
Your actions have a strong influence on your child, so be a good example and apologize when you accidentally interrupt. My 4-year old will make sure to point out when I have broken a rule! I’m sure yours will too!
What tips do you have for teaching a child good manners?