How To Teach Your Child Gift Manners

We all have been to a child’s birthday party when the child opens a birthday present and exclaims, “I don’t like this.” We simultaneously cringe and breathe a sign of relief knowing the parents are mortified, but at least it isn’t our child – at least not yet. With some simple prep before the birthday party, you can avoid these situations while teaching your child basic manners.

The “why” – Explain to your child that everyone is coming to the party to celebrate her birthday because they love her. Tell her how special that is and that you want everyone to realize how much she appreciates that.

Not on the list – Your child most likely will receive gifts he didn’t ask for. Let him know that people pick out gifts because they think he will like them even if he didn’t ask for it. Explain that a simple “This looks fun!” is an appropriate response and will make the gift giver feel special. He might be surprised because it might turn out to be his favorite gift.

Double Take – Your child opens up the newest American Doll and realizes she already has it. Prep her to say a generous, “Thank you!” and let her know you can always exchange it later.

Gloating – Your son received the new video game he has been wanting since it hit the shelves. He teases the other kids that now he has it and they don’t. Remind him before the party how important sharing is and that a good sport (and grateful person) doesn’t hold a gift over the other guests’ heads.

With little prep you can remind your child about good manners of gratitude and avoid some embarrassing moments that would make you and Ms. Manners blush!

Posted January 26, 2011

by MichelleH


17 Responses

  1. Chelle says:

    Those are all great things to encourage children. So many times wrong things aresaid and come across poorly. Sometimes kids just need some ecouraging words to help them better understand. :)

  2. jenn says:

    what a great post. i dont think enough children get a lesson on this subject and ive seen some pretty poor manners, so thank you

  3. Cinella says:

    Awesome, just what I needed. We have a birthday coming up.

  4. Anne says:

    I entered to win the Kolcraft Wally Wonderbug Giveaway @ Familylicious Reviews! Stop by and enter at

  5. MichelleH says:

    You are very welcome Jenn! Thanks for reading our Kolcraft baby Matters blog :)

  6. Cassandra says:

    Thank you for the great advice and information on this topic! I know some other parents that would definitely benefit from these tips when they get frustrated. :)

  7. Cassandra says:

    I like AGE on facebook cassandra webber ferder

  8. amy pugmire says:

    wow! thanks for the great tips. I will have to use these.

  9. Rachel B says:

    I love this- we are just doing this with my 2 year old daughter now. Thank you!

  10. Mary says:

    Perfect timing as we approach my daughter’s 5th birthday!

  11. Katie Jones says:

    These are all great ideas! Teaching children to have good manners when opening gifts – especially if it is a gift they don’t think they’ll like – is so tough! Love all these tips.

  12. C's Mommy says:

    some great tips!

  13. MichelleH says:

    Thank you Katie! Glad you found it helpful.

  14. MichelleH says:

    Happy birthday to your daughter Mary. Hope it is a wonderful day for your family!

  15. MichelleH says:

    Yeah for you Rachel. It’s never too early to teach good manners!

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