I can’t believe my 2-year-old granddaughter, Zoey, already completed the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge with our focus on toddler manners! We just started the challenge on Martin Luther King Day and worked on it when Zoey visited my house four or so afternoons each week. I have my daughter-in-law, Chea, to thank for Zoey’s awesome manners. I’m just glad I can help encourage Zoey to continue using them.
I like the 100 Acts of Kindness to be something toddlers can easily be successful with, whether they need a lot of help from their families to complete them or whether they’re able to complete them fairly easily without a lot of extra help. That’s part of the reason I chose a manners challenge for Zoey. Chea had trained her so well in using manners (and Zoey picks up manners rules so easily) that I knew she could succeed at showing 100 good manners before Valentine’s Day.
The 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge was a good excuse for us to place extra emphasis on manners. Montessori manners lessons and practice are the perfect way to focus on manners with a 2 year old. Zoey thinks it’s fun to see demonstrations of manners and then show how to do the manners herself. She also loves books about manners. After we initially worked with Montessori manners cards, I made a manners book with a second set of manners cards.
I was careful not to use the 100 Acts of Kindness chart (hundreds chart) as a reward chart, and we just talked about counting to 100 good manners. When Zoey finished her 100 good manners yesterday, we talked about all the people she made happy with her good manners. Since we often meet dogs with their owners during our neighborhood walks, we even talked about the animals she made happy. (Zoey was taught how to ask if she could pet a dog, how to approach the dog, and how to pet the dog gently.)
Now we’ll continue our focus on manners, although we won’t be counting manners.
- It’s just become a fun habit to talk about good manners and how they’re making people (and animals) happy.
- Zoey’s continuing to practice her manners lessons. Yesterday, she wanted to practice some of the manners in the book, such as using a tissue to blow her nose.
- We’ve been singing manners songs, handwashing songs (because it’s good manners to have good hygiene), and kindness songs during the challenge. We’re continuing that emphasis as well.
I’m so glad we chose a manners focus for 100 Acts of Kindness. I’m not sure what our focus will be next year, but this was perfect for this year. Have you been doing 100 Acts of Kindness or focusing on manners lately?
Learn more about Montessori at Home or School: How to Teach Grace and Courtesy!
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