How to Teach Respect

It’s so easy for Aretha Franklin to spell it in a song but it is a lot more complicated teaching it to children.

Respect is one of the values that a parent must teach his child. This is a core quality that he should possess even at a young age and must maintain through adolescence and adulthood.

Respect is not similar to obedience. Look at it this way: a child obeys quickly because he’s afraid. But if he respects you, then he will obey you because he trusts that you know the best for him.

trustTherefore, in that paragraph alone, you already see the connection between obedience and respect.

The best way you can actually teach respect to your child is to show him respect yourself.

You have to respect your child. In doing so, he will do the same to you because he would feel its importance.

Remind him the golden rule:

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

A child, even if he is in his grade school years will already understand this.

Instill in him that respect is an attitude and he can succeed in life if he has this value. Tell him that if he doesn’t respect his peers, his authority or even himself, there will always be personal obstacles.

You should also tell the child that respect does not only mean one-on-one interaction. It could also be taking care of the belongings of other people.

It could also mean doing what is expected of him, or his responsibilities.

A respectful child gets along so well with his peers because he is mature enough to understand that he is not the only person in the entire universe.

He is also aware that his actions can affect others around him.

Respect, even though it is taught at school, must also be learned at home.

Parents have more influence with regards to respect when compared to the teachers.

When the children see how respectful their parents are of other people, then they will do the exact same thing.

Here are some tips for the parent to show respect to their children.

1. If you do something wrong, admit your fault then apologize. Be honest. You may be the parent but that does not mean that you cannot make mistakes.

2. Never insult, embarrass or make fun of your child – especially in public. This will only affect his self-esteem. Always compliment them.

3. When your child is old enough, let him make his own decisions and take responsibility of the consequences from that action.

4. Always let your child have the liberty to explain his side. Let him say his peace and listen.

5. Be there for your child. Give him your full attention.

6. Children can easily learn from anything the parent says or does. Make sure that you as a parent are a good model when it comes to respect.

7. Follow rules. Take for example, driving. Always do what the signs ask of you even if there are no cops around.

8. Show that you are concerned about the welfare of others: people, animals and environment.

9. Whenever you see a public figure that you can refer to as a poor model, discuss them with your child. Make your child aware that these actions must not be done.

10. By teaching your child to respect himself, he will then respect other people. It all begins with self-respect. Once we can respect ourselves, then respecting others is a cinch.

11. Their parents’ opinions matter to them. If the parent believes that the child can succeed, then the child’s confidence will be boosted, thus allowing him to progress more.

12. Build the child’s independence. Give them responsibilities that they can easily handle – like chores around the house, paying the bills, watching over a younger sibling and the like.

13. Set rules in the house but explain to the child why it must be obeyed. Stick to the rules you make as well.

14. Help the child set his goals. Again, self-respect is the secret. With a good amount of self-respect, confidence skyrockets upward, thus the child can really achieve his goals.

15. Honesty is the best policy. Remind your child that if they were able to pull off fooling other people, they can’t fool themselves. Lying, cheating and stealing is not only harmful to others, it is also detrimental to one’s self.

16. Last but definitely not the least, show love! In fact, say, "I love you" often. Hugs and kisses are great.


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