A Greeting is not Just a Greeting

I teach all of my children to use their manners, and to be as polite as possible. In Cameron’s case, I have to remind him more frequently than I had to remind the other children at his age. It simply does not usually occur to him to observe the social expectations.

With this in mind, I place a reason why with the direction to say “Please” or “Thank you.” I say, “What should you say if someone does something nice for you?” He answers, “I should say, ‘Thank you.'” 

When it comes to greeting someone, I direct him to take the time to say “Hello” to them, but also to go a step further. I tell him to use the person’s name. When he first asked why he should use their name, I said, “Because it lets them know that you think they’re important.”

We all try to teach our children to have manners. In Cameron’s case, I am teaching him a valuable skill for survival and functionality in the outside world. 

The knowledge is slowly seeping in. For the past couple of days, he has greeted his van drivers as soon as he saw them. He also used their name! For a child who showed little or no awareness or interest in others just a couple of years ago, this is a huge milestone. I am quite proud.


Posted on December 12, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I know it has been said before – but it often seems that the seemingly “Small” accomplishments are the best in cases like this. What was just an everyday teaching moment for your other children is a huge accomplishment for Cameron – and one to be celebrated 🙂 Well done!

    • Thank you, Dave. I find that the small things get celebrated on a deeper level with Cameron. He has to try three times harder for every accomplishment. Things we take for granted with the average child are monumental in the case of a child like him.

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