Manners Improve Educational Experience

Article from The Federal Way Mirror

Across the country, the familiar echo of school bells ringing mark the start of another year.

Children are excited to return to the classroom and see their friends and parents are delighted to exchange the carefree days of summer for a regular schedule. The shopping is over, pencils and paper are tucked into backpacks, and the excitement of the first day is here. Students wonder what to wear, will others be nice to them, and will they fit in.

School can mean stress!

Children who are in an environment where manners are taught and respected feel safer, have better morale, are healthier and learn better. Those who are in an environment where there is a lack of manners experience a higher level of anxiety, illness, absenteeism, depression and poor grades.

Surveys indicate that most Americans believe in the value of good manners and they also believe that our society is no longer as civil as it once was. Interestingly, most people do not believe they are rude themselves. Each of us has a social responsibility to do our part to create a more polite society.

Children learn what they live. A parent who yells at the coach on the field, and continues to rip him apart over dinner, teaches their child far more than that the coach may have made a wrong call. Studies show that rudeness often moves to bullying, then to abuse. To many, it seems that society no longer has limits. Rude behavior has become rampant today and it is lethal to our emotional, physical and financial health. It is highly destructive on every level.

Business breeds rudeness. Many people claim to be too busy to say please and thank you; to hold the door for the person behind them; to let their host know if they can attend a function; enjoy a meal with a loved one; or even to write a thank you note. Lives that are over-extended and over-committed do not have the ability to live and move with ease and grace toward others. We all are pressed by traffic, ringing phones, e-mails, running children from one event to the next, meeting deadlines at work, and the guilt of not enough time for family and friends. The very act of one person being kind to another eases the stress of the moment and improves the quality of both lives.