Musings on Being Polite

One of the things that I insist on at Brownies is a certain level of politeness.  Please and thank you, not interrupting while someone is talking, simple things like that.

When we do inspection (the girls have to bring some “useful items” each week to gain points), the person who gets inspected first is always the one who says:

Please can I go first?”

It took them a while to get the idea of that one, but now they do it almost automatically.

We had a Promise Party tonight, and that always means cake – the girls do their Hostess badge.  Our standing rule is that the Brownies aren’t allowed to hand out cake to anyone who isn’t sitting nicely.  Those being given cake are supposed to say thank you.

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Everyone loves cake.

I was watching the girls get their cake tonight, and only heard about 5 or 6 thank you’s (out of 30 children).  So, for the second round of cake I started reminding people.

One of the older Brownies said something interesting.  She said,

I think it’s actually ruder, when you tell them to, and then they say thanks.

She has a point.  It does make it seem like they are only saying it because they’ve been told to, not because they are truly grateful.

On the other hand, if they aren’t reminded, then they’ll never learn.  Or at least, the learning will take longer.  It’s a difficult balance.

How do you encourage your Brownies to be polite?

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4 thoughts on “Musings on Being Polite

Add yours

  1. What a tasty-looking spread of cakes! My best story about politeness is that once on a Guide camp, we had ‘The Elephant and the Bad Baby’ as a bedtime story (it wasn’t planned but sort of arose out of circumstances). The message of the story is that it’s important to say please, and the leader who read it did really well and had us all in fits of giggles. For the rest of the camp, all we had to say was “remember the elephant and the bad baby”, and the Guides would be polite, and smile remembering the story.

      1. I honestly can’t remember…I wonder if any of the girls (now Rangers) still remember it, I’ll have to ask!

  2. I think its only true that its ‘ruder’ if when reminded they say ‘thank you’ with bad grace or attitude or rolling their eyes, rather than with an “oops yep, forgot” kind of tone.

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