When you visit the Internet and any popular social media platforms, you will be surprised by how ill-mannered many people are. In fact, if you encounter someone who’s well-mannered, that has more shock to the system than seeing someone who’s polite and kind. This erosion of manners, etiquette, and good conduct in society has been going on for decades, but we’ve only realized how callous this new generation has become in the past couple of years.
It’s not that generations before are perfect, but there’s an ongoing belief that they try to be kind and polite to one another despite the many misgivings they may have about other people. They know that kindness should still be the prevailing conduct out there. Callousness, rudeness, and brazenness have no space in a civilized society. And yet, many people, both in person and online, continue to exhibit such a brazen attitude.
The question in everyone’s mind now is, “who is at fault?” When did such rudeness start? Who should be responsible for teaching them good manners again?
Should Teachers Do It?
Many parents have the misconception that teachers should teach their kids everything—from scientific theories to mathematical equations to good manners and right conduct in an everyday setting. But educators are already balking at the idea of being responsible for teaching kids the proper manners. They are already saddled with the heavy burden of instilling discipline in them in the classroom when they teach and share ideas. Now, parents also want them to be the primary source of teaching manners?
Even in a sectarian school, teachers already have to learn what the principles of Catholic social teaching are. They have to follow certain guidelines to teach Catholic school students. Certainly, they shouldn’t be forced anymore to teach kids how to say “thank you,” “please,” “sorry,” and “excuse me.” Kids should start attending school knowing how to say these phrases already.
A great number of students are already showing up in school without those manners instilled in them. They are rude to their teachers. They laugh at the mistakes of their peers. Many of them eventually become bullies because nobody taught them that it’s bad to take joy in the misery of others. No one taught them about being appreciative of other people and being grateful when others give them favors.
Yes, Parents Are the Primary Sources of Good Manners
Teaching your kids proper manners is an important part of child-rearing. Neglecting this responsibility has repercussions on society as a whole. Kids will grow up with an instinct to say “thank you,” “sorry,” and “excuse me” when they are taught to say these words early on in their lives. When they finally go to school, they will sit and listen to their teachers. They will also listen because their parents taught them that not listening is also a sign of rudeness.
Many parents, of course, struggle at this. Studies showed that single parents find it the hardest to focus on teaching their kids the right manners. They simply do not have enough time to sit down with them and teach them what is the right thing to do in a given situation. They spoil them because they have to work two jobs and couldn’t have time for them. Instead of imposing rules, single parents will let their kids do what they want because they don’t have the energy and time to teach them about manners.
But is time an excuse to let your kids be difficult people in school and in the future, at work? Should other people have a hard time dealing with them because parents couldn’t be bothered to teach them correct manners? Is it fair for them to struggle in the future to get along with their partners, friends, workmates, and acquaintances?
Parents should make sure teaching kids proper manners is part of their everyday conversation at home. When they play, teach them to share their toys and be grateful for them. Talk to them about the world and how kindness can go a long way toward making other people happy.
Yes, manners have to be taught in school, too. Teachers are the second parents. The school is the second home. Teachers and parents have to work hand in hand to teach good manners to the next generation. But when it comes down to it, parents have the bigger responsibility of making sure their kids grow up to be kind and caring adults who will contribute positively to a society that’s starving for a bit of goodness.