Should We Teach Etiquette in Schools?

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Originally posted on April 21, 2023 @ 8:30 am

Etiquette, the customary code of polite behavior in society, has always played a vital role in shaping an individual’s personality and character. Today, in our globalized world, etiquette has become even more critical, as it has a significant influence on how a person is perceived in social and professional settings. Hence, the debate on whether we should teach etiquette in schools is gaining momentum. In this context, the following essay will explore the reasons for and against teaching etiquette in schools, and will conclude with an opinion on the matter.

The Importance of Etiquette

Etiquette is a set of social norms and rules that govern behavior in various situations. It is not only about saying please and thank you but also about respecting others and making them feel comfortable. Good manners and etiquette can make a significant difference in personal and professional relationships. Therefore, the question arises, should we teach etiquette in schools?

Benefits of Teaching Etiquette in Schools

Teaching etiquette in schools has numerous benefits. Firstly, it can help students develop social skills and confidence, which can be useful in all areas of life. Secondly, it can promote kindness and respect, creating a more positive school atmosphere. Finally, it can prepare students for the professional world, where good manners and proper etiquette are essential.

Misconceptions About Etiquette

There are some misconceptions about etiquette that need to be addressed. Some people think that etiquette is outdated and unnecessary in today’s society. However, etiquette is not about being prim and proper, but rather about being respectful and considerate of others. Another misconception is that etiquette is elitist and exclusive. However, good manners and proper etiquette are universal and can be learned by anyone, regardless of their background.

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Challenges of Teaching Etiquette in Schools

Teaching etiquette in schools comes with its own set of challenges. Firstly, it can be difficult to find the time and resources to teach etiquette in addition to the regular curriculum. Secondly, some students may not be receptive to the idea of learning etiquette, seeing it as boring or irrelevant. Finally, there may be cultural differences that need to be taken into account when teaching etiquette.

Addressing Challenges Through Curriculum Integration

One way to address the challenges of teaching etiquette in schools is to integrate it into the existing curriculum. For example, etiquette lessons can be incorporated into language arts classes through writing letters or emails using proper etiquette. Math classes can teach budgeting and financial etiquette. History classes can explore the evolution of etiquette over time. By integrating etiquette into the regular curriculum, it becomes more relevant and engaging for students.

Addressing Challenges Through Cultural Awareness

Another way to address the challenges of teaching etiquette in schools is through cultural awareness. Etiquette can vary widely between cultures, and it is essential to be sensitive to these differences. For example, in some cultures, it is customary to remove shoes before entering a home, while in others, it is considered rude to do so. By teaching students about different cultures’ etiquette, they can better understand and respect cultural differences.

Addressing Challenges Through Role Models

Another way to address the challenges of teaching etiquette in schools is through role models. Teachers and school staff can model good manners and proper etiquette, creating a culture of respect and consideration. When students see adults exhibiting proper etiquette, they are more likely to do the same.

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FAQs for the topic: Should we teach etiquette in schools?

What is etiquette and why should it be taught in schools?

Etiquette refers to a set of rules and conventions that govern social behavior in different contexts. These rules range from basic courtesies, such as saying “please” and “thank you,” to more complex behaviors like proper table manners and professional conduct. It is important to teach etiquette in schools so that students can learn how to interact with others in a respectful and considerate manner. By learning proper etiquette skills, students can develop strong social skills and build positive relationships with their peers and adults.

Can etiquette be taught effectively in schools?

Yes, etiquette can be effectively taught in schools through various methods such as classroom instruction, role-playing, and practical application. Teachers can incorporate etiquette lessons into their curriculum and reinforce the importance of polite behavior throughout the school day. Additionally, schools can invite etiquette experts to present workshops and seminars to students on various topics such as dining etiquette, professional etiquette, and social etiquette.

Should etiquette be prioritized over academic subjects?

No, etiquette should not be prioritized over academic subjects as academic proficiency is a primary goal of education. However, etiquette education can be integrated into the curriculum alongside academic subjects. When taught effectively, etiquette can enhance a student’s social skills and improve their overall academic performance.

Is etiquette only important for certain groups of students?

No, etiquette is important for all students regardless of their background or socio-economic status. Good manners and social skills are useful in every aspect of life regardless of your profession or social standing. Students who learn proper etiquette skills are likely to succeed in all areas of life, whether it be in the workplace, social gatherings or other community settings.

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Should etiquette be taught at home instead of in schools?

While etiquette should be taught at home, not all parents are knowledgeable about proper etiquette rules and conventions. Therefore, it is important for schools to teach etiquette as a part of their curriculum. Moreover, not all students have the necessary support and resources at home to learn proper etiquette; therefore, schools can help bridge this gap and equip students with important life skills.

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