Kind Kids: Teaching Manners the Charlotte Mason Way

Join Amy and Leah as they wrap up this podcast season with a discussion on manners. How can we teach our kids to be polite? And while we're at it, how can we help them learn to be the kind of people who are thoughtful and considerate toward others?

As Charlotte Mason homeschoolers, our first inclination is to reach for a book - but with manners, that's not always the best option. We chat about making abstract manners tangible for our kids, doing the work of parenting, and helping our kids learn to live well with others - and when to pull in the books!

"The Truth of Art, is what we may call essential Truth; that, for example, given, such and such a character, he must needs have thought and acted in such and such a way, with such and such consequences; given, a certain aspect of nature, and the poet will receive from it such and such ideas; or, certain things of common life, as a dog with a bone, for example, will present themselves to the thinker as fables, illustrating some of the happenings of life. This sort of fiction is of enormous value to us, whether we find it in poetry or romance; it teaches us morals and manners; what to do in given circumstances; what will happen if we behave in a certain way."

Charlotte Mason Vol. 4

1:07- Everyday homeschooling season

1:44- How to go about teaching good manners

2:20- Is this something you think about explicitly? 

3:20- Addressing when these things come up- how to prevent bad habits

4:25- Talking through things very explicitly- swim lesson example

4:55- Good to reflect on kids' manners

5:10- The impact of kids' manners on the home atmosphere 

8:05- How do we teach our kids manners, and how do we teach them qualities like kindness, respect, and consideration? 

9:00- Using shame to "teach" manners during an 80's childhood

10:42- Charlotte Mason felt strongly against using shame, punishment, and fear as tools for "teaching" children

11:30- "Officer's club behavior"

12:40- Reflecting on how we learned manners can be helpful

13:05- What books can we read our children in order to teach manners? 

13:50- Non-fiction books about manners have not been helpful to us because of a lack of context. The most helpful thing for us is fictional books that demonstrate exemplary characteristics. 

15:00- Remembering when fictional characters did something brave, noble, right, etc. 

16:15- Amy shares her thoughts on lack of context in books that focus on manners

17:45- You don't necessarily need a story wrapped around it to have context

18:20- "I really hope my kid gets THAT message" 

20:15- Giving our children experiences in which they would need to use their best manners is important 

21:40- Believe that someone is doing the best that they can

22:15- During habit training, Charlotte Mason said we should inspire our children with words. 

23:25- What happens when have a more abstract skill set to work on with children? Making abstract ideas tangible. 

24:50- There can be times where we pull in books that help us teach these things. Are there any books that you do like for teaching? 

26:20- Not trying to sneak in a moral message

27:00- Books trying to sneak in environmental messages

28:00-In that example, fear is used

28:24- What encouragement would you give a mom who feels weary about teaching manners? 

Links:

Laying Down the Rails

Habits for the Early Years from My Little Robins

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