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9 Books to help teach children manners

Gorgeous books about manners and etiquette for children - and quick tips for raising perfectly polite offspring

Five Ways To Teach Children Manners

There is no doubt a well-mannered child will stand out in today’s world for all the right reasons. Saying, “Please” and “thank you”, practicing good table manners and respecting others will get your child noticed by teachers, other parents and, of course is an essential life skill.

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Teaching good manners starts at home but,  can sometimes get trickier to convince an older child to follow these basic manners when his peers at school might not be doing so. But, with these golden rules and these beautiful, informative and essential handbooks we’ve got you covered. We give you permission thank us later!

Five Basic Manners for Children

1. Set age-appropriate rules
A two-year-old may not yet be able to chew with her mouth closed, but a four-year-old certainly should.

2. Set an example
You can’t expect politeness if you are not polite yourself, so keep saying “please” and “thank you”.

3. Explain why good manners matter
Talk to her about why others respond better if you are polite and show respect.

4. Give clear instructions
Before your child’s birthday party, explain that she must not shout something like, “I’ve already got this doll!” when she opens her presents. Tell her to smile, say thank you, and then you can return the toy later.

5. Praise good manners
Praise her when she is polite and if you need to correct a slip in her manners, try to do so in private.


9 of the Best Books about Manners & Etiquette for Children

Connoisseur Kids: Etiquette, Manners, and Living Well for Parents and Their Little Ones by Jennifer L. Scott

A playful and beautifully illustrated take on manners by the author of the bestselling Madame Chic series and founder of the Daily Connoisseur blog. Parents and younger children will work together on communication, table manners, tidiness, thinking of others, grooming, and health. With activities, learning games, fill-in-the-blanks, letter-writing exercises, recipes (for food and for slime!), and some fun songs and rhymes help kids learn concepts and practice good behaviours.

Manners Can be Fun by Munro Leaf

Monroe Leaf, born in 1905, was the author and illustrator of dozens of children’s books.  Manners Can Be Fun was published in 1936 and is considered his second most popular book after The Story of Ferdinand. Munro Leaf died in 1976 but, his books on manners live on. With stick figure drawings and a brief text this little book explains to children why good manners are important and how to have good manners at home, at play, and on visits.

Manners Begin at Breakfast: Modern etiquette for families by Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece

This beautiful book (with specially commissioned watercolours) addresses the rules of children’s etiquette, including basic table manners, social media, fashion dos and don’ts, and party conversation by the Royal founder of the Marie Chantal fashion label. An essential guide for all parents keen to raise polite, well-rounded children, equipped to thrive in society and develop into confident, successful adults.

READ MORE >> Modern Day Manners from Princess Marie Chantal of Greece

How to Speak Politely and Why by Munro Leaf 

We couldn’t help include another classic book from the Munro Leaf collection that has been updated for the 21st century. This picture book with a easy-to-understand message encourages proper speech and good grammar without constant nagging. Using his signature style of amusing stick figure drawings and captions, Leaf makes clear such things as the difference between can and may, and the reason why one does not say “he done it” or “she come.” Also, look out for How to Behave and Why

Emily Post’s the Guide to Good Manners for Kids by Peggy Post

Since 1922, the name Emily Post has represented good manners based on kindness, courtesy, and unselfishness. Today, the third generation of Post authors, Peggy Post and Cindy Post Senning have written this reference guide – filled with bold illustrations – for modern kids full of simple, practical advice that Emily herself would most definitely have approved of. From writing thank-you notes to using the Internet safely and, attending after-school events to helping out at home.

What Do You Say, Dear? by Seeyle Joslin with illustrations by Maurice Sendak 

A timeless 1958 picture book with a humorous take on manners. Filed with delightfully absurd situations like What do you say when: ‘you bump into a crocodile on a crowded city street?’, ‘a nice gentleman introduces you to a baby elephant?’ or ‘the Queen feeds you so much spaghetti that you don’t fit in your chair anymore?’ With elegant and exceedingly funny illustrations this is the quirkiest book of manners you’ll ever read.

Tiffany’s Table Manners for Teenagers by Walter Hoving, illustrated by Joe Eula

Concise, witty, and beautifully illustrated this classic guide to good table manners has delighted readers of all ages for nearly 70 years. Written by the former chairman of Tiffany’s of New York, it is a step-by-step introduction to all the basic mealtime situations, silverware use and sociability including the correct way to hold a fish fork, how to eat an artichoke properly, and, best of all, how to be a gracious and entertaining dining companion.

Mr. Boddington’s Etiquette: Charm and Civility for Every Occasion by Mr. Boddington Studio

From the NYC stationery and letter writing studio of Mr Boddington, founded by Rebecca S. Ruebensaal this jaunty little handbook helps make manners less of a fuss for all the family. Filled with charming illustrations, this eloquent and witty little book offers dos and don’ts for a more polite society covering everything from social events, how to write a thank-you note and how to correctly address an envelope.

Modern Manners: Tools to Take You to the Top by Dorothea Johnson and Liv Tyler

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Written by the world-renowned etiquette expert with delightful commentary throughout from famous granddaughter, the actress and model Liv Tyler comes this elegant guide to 21st-century manners and etiquette. A great book for teenagers and young asylums about to enter the ‘grown-up’ world; With essential dos and don’ts that address both 21st-century and classic questions, including: giving confident handshakes, e-mail etiquette, including what to post-or not-on social media, table manners and attending social events.