Manners for Today’s Teen Boys | Do Say Give

Manners for Today’s Teen Boys

Children's Manners

Summer is a great time to do an inventory of the manners we need to work on with our children, including our teens! Today I am so excited to have Jackie Dudley of Columbus Junior Cotillion sharing the manners that teen boys should master before they leave the home for good. 

What is the definition of the word manners? The Cambridge Dictionary defines the word manners as the ways of behaving toward people, especially ways that are socially correct and show respect for their comfort and their feelings.

Here is a list of manners tips that every teen boy needs to know. Share them with your son. They will not only enable you to connect with your son but the manners will allow him to be more confident and more comfortable as he continues to grow. It is never too early or too late to learn and use manners:

  1. Don’t post or say something aloud that is unkind. Just because you can does not mean you should.
  2. When someone speaks to you, look at them in the eyes, and respond politely. Yes that means you should put down your device.
  3. When making a request, use the words “please” and “thank you.” Really! You will be remembered as being polite and thoughtful.
  4. When you meet someone for the first time or if you are in a room and others are entering the room that you have not met and or spoken to that day, stand up to greet them.
  5. Remember to enunciate and say your name clearly and slowly so the person you are meeting can remember you! Shake hands or use another form of greeting that you and the person you are meeting are comfortable using.
  6. Never use or even take your device to a table where you will be eating with others. Take the time to charge it instead!
  7. Offer to help when you are able, especially with tasks that others are doing when you are around. I just love it when one of my sons just jumps in to help me with one of my tasks.
  8. Make your bed. Yes, every single day. It is about starting each day in taking pride in your space. That daily positive start-to-your-day deed will start your day off right.
  9. Clean up after yourself, in every way and everywhere you are. Leave a space better than you found it.
  10. Help with the chores where you live. Just because it may not be your chore, does not mean it wouldn’t be fun to help do it. Helping others creates a sense of worth and self-confidence in young men.
  11. Connect with others in ways that they like to connect. That means you may have to have a phone call to actually speak to older family or community members instead of texting! It is about them, not you.
  12. Be thankful to those that help you (in any way). The ability to say “thank you” is a classic for all ages, as long as it is always sincere and spoken with eye contact.
  13. Write a thank-you note and make sure someone else can read your writing. It will guarantee you are remembered in the best of ways. After all, what good is writing it if someone else cannot read it.
  14. Show respect for yourself by caring about how you are dressed and how your hair (including facial hair) is kept. Others notice and it is a reflection of your pride in who you are!
  15. Use good posture. It makes you look confident (and you will be glad you did when you get older).
  16. When apologizing, mean it. The words “I’m sorry” are very powerful.
  17. Demonstrate respect by listening to others’ thoughts and opinions without reacting. Listen and hear. This also refers to when relating to others. Always be considerate of others and respectful when speaking and in your actions. Do, say, give respect. Always.
  18. Consider using “You are welcome” instead of “No problem” to those that are older. This is a frequent topic of discussion with my work with young people. It is VERY IMPORTANT that you think about to whom you are speaking. Older generations my not understand the same terms, so try to think of how to speak in a way so that person would perceive your words as thoughtful, not necessarily your way. Young men should learn to speak in a well-mannered way to people across different age levels.
  19. Hold a door open for someone! It is such a nice thing and greatly appreciated (especially by your date!). I always feel special when someone opens a car door and/or a building door for me. 
  20. Do something for someone that is unexpected. Example: Maybe put a note in your mail box thanking your mail carrier or call one of you favorite teachers.
  21. Kindness is needed in this world. So be the embodiment of kindness and you will see the world differently and change your world for the better.

Remember that manners are about how you make others feel through your actions and responses. Talk with your son and suggest he start using a few of the above tips and he will be on his way to being more mannerly. In no time at all, he will notice how much more well-mannered the world around him is. And it will grow his self-confidence!

Now, go and lead by example, in a mannerly way!

Jackie Dudley is the owner of Professional Etiquette and Protocols in Columbus, Georgia. She is a dynamic etiquette and protocol professional that connects to her clients in a refreshing and relatable way. She is also the Director of Columbus Junior Cotillion where she enriches the lives of young people (grades 5th-12th) through etiquette education and character development. Using her business background, non-profit experience, adult and youth learning theory training techniques, and unique perspective of being a mother of four sons, she creates positive and professional etiquette and protocol training programs that are memorable and relevant in today’s fast-paced, technology-infused world. 


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4 thoughts on “Manners for Today’s Teen Boys

  1. I don’t understand why this is directed at boys? Seems all of them would apply to girls as well (except for the reference to facial hair)

    1. Yes most do! The guest author is a mom of four boys so I asked her to write from the perspective of a boy mom since I often write from the perspective of a girl mom.