The Norman Transcript

March 22, 2013

Manners are of great importance for everyone, including children of all ages

The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Q: A friend and I were eating lunch at a restaurant, and it just happened to be around the time high school-aged students were also at lunch. I understand they’re kids and not being supervised, but does anyone teach manners anymore?

— Diane and Pam

Dear Diane and Pam,

It is a bit disillusioning to watch many young people today who seem to think manners are of no importance. On the other hand, we deal with students on a daily basis who do know proper manners.

If parents or family members aren’t teaching proper manners, the only place we could think of that might be teaching manners could be a family and consumer science class. We also have seen articles in teen magazines.

It is a great time to remind all people the simple manners that should always be followed. Parents, please make sure your children are aware of these:

· Use “please,” “thank you” and “excuse me.”

· Chew with your mouth closed (including gum).

· Don’t talk with food in your mouth.

· Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough and don’t pick your nose.

· Use a firm handshake and look the person in the eye.

· Don’t interrupt unless it’s an emergency.

· Don’t use foul language in public.

· Hold doors open for others.

· Use eating utensils properly.

· Always keep a napkin in your lap while eating, then use it.

· Don’t reach across the table. Ask for something to be passed.

· Don’t make fun of those less fortunate than you.

· A written thank you note is a must for gifts

Q: How do you feel about the implementation of school uniforms for all students?

— Matt, Oklahoma City

Dear Matt,

Personally, we love the idea of school uniforms. Furthermore, we would like to have different grade level groups distinguish themselves by wearing a particular color. Our reasons for liking school uniforms are:

· There is no socioeconomic class differentiation.

· Anyone in the building out of uniform is easily recognized and obvious.

· There is minimal cost to parents.

· A student’s self-esteem could be positively affected.

· Uniforms act as a unification of peers.

· The amount of time administrators spend disciplining those with dress code violations could be spent on other issues.

The negative feedback we have heard on discussions of this subject usually go something like this:

· Kids can’t express their individuality.

· They don’t want to look like everyone else.

· I can afford brand-name clothing, so my child should be allowed to wear them.

Think of the kids who have to wear the same clothes several times a week. As far as looking like everyone else, just think of sports teams or the military. We would be happy to hear your thoughts.

Please send questions to questions.classact@gmail.

com. Sally and Jeannie are certified school counselors. The responses presented don’t necessarily reflect the views of any certain school district.

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