Gilbert the Goat Learns Respect

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Activities and Discussions

Cody Learns to tell the Truth

Read The Story

Activities and Discussions

 

Teaching Values to Young Children: Respect

Awareness of what it means to have and show respect for others develops as the infant and toddler comes into contact with an ever increasing number of people and social situations. Preschool children need regular discussion of the value of this trait; that discussion can grow out of real life situations as well as from these stories.

Two and three year olds   

Two and three year olds tend to be very focused on their own wants and needs, which is part of normal development at this age.  Those who have siblings or are in day care will be more aware that they must accommodate others, but respect as a concept is too abstract for them.     

What you can do   

At this stage, try to teach your child to behave in a manner that is considerate to others in a concrete way.  For example, reinforce taking turns and using words like please or thank you.    

Four and five year olds   

Four and five year olds are very involved in socializing. They tend to be intensely aware of the importance of friends.  However, developmentally, they are still concerned with their own needs and are likely to have to be reminded to show the same respect to others that they expect to be shown.   

What you can do   

At home, at school, and in other environments, children of this age will need coaching on respecting the needs and feelings of people around them, on the importance of following directions, waiting for their turn and acting thoughtfully. As you model and discuss these points, be sure to emphasize how showing respect is a good way to gain approval and build relationships.  

Six and seven year olds   

Six and seven year olds should have many examples of people being respectful or disrespectful in their daily lives, and will be able to understand the concept of respect if you demonstrate it with examples.   

What you can do   

Ask children to give you their own observations during their daily lives when people are or aren’t respectful of each other. Examples might include being disrespectful to someone in a store by behaving badly or speaking rudely to them, or not using manners.  Emphasize that showing respect means treating someone like they would like to be treated, and discuss what this means in practical terms.  

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