Giving our Children the Gift of Ten Little Words

Santa Cruz Montessori Elementary

At this time of year as we think about gifts for our children, sometimes the most important gifts are intangible. Montessori teacher and author Maren Schmidt writes in a “Kids Talk” column:

“Being savvy in the social graces is called emotional or social intelligence. Emotional awareness and interpersonal skills are seen as significant factors in successful relationships of all kinds. Knowing the right word to say at the right time to the right person – well, wouldn’t that be fabulous?

Stephen Covey in The 8th Habit says that when he visits with children, he encourages them to learn ten words, or four phrases, that will help guarantee that, when these words are used in a desire to be of service to others, they’ll get what they want from other people.

Covey’s four phrases are “please,” “thank you,” “I love you,” and “how may I help?”

Ten amazing words. When we use these words, the rough edges of a situation seem to go smooth.

Let’s teach our children and ourselves to use these four phrases, these ten little words, on a daily basis. We could change the world.”

Thank you to all the children, parents, teachers and staff who work together to create our Santa Cruz Montessori community where children speak these phrases from their hearts!