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Rules to Live By

Posted by on August 5, 2012

A couple days ago I was attempting to discipline my almost 4yo son about something when he interjected with what he thought I was going to say. He then recited a couple rules from his preschool classroom. This was the first time I’d heard of these rules (which is not surprising because Alex speaks as little about school as a typically reticent teenager), so I asked him to recite the rest. I thought they were so good that I decided to modify them slightly and print them out to be displayed in our living room. Here are both sets.

Teacher’s Rules

  1. Be kind.
  2. Use polite words.
  3. Listen carefully.
  4. Think first.
  5. Respect everyone.
  6. Take turns.
  7. Be honest.
  8. Help others.
  9. Do your best.

My Rules

  1. Think before you act or speak!
  2. Pay attention and listen carefully.
  3. Speak and act politely and respectfully.
  4. Be gentle and kind.
  5. Be honest.
  6. Be helpful and cooperative.
  7. Be generous, take turns, and share.
  8. Ask before taking something.
  9. Do your best.
  10. Forgive others.

I like them. Do you? I think a number of adults could use a refresher on rules like these.

I phrased them the way I did to limit the number to ten. I might reword them to be shorter (for easier memorization) and total about twelve.

Update 08/05/12: Inspired in part by Rob’s comment, I’ve decided to take a stab at a more concrete version of the list. I wasn’t able to avoid all abstraction, though.

How to Speak and Act Properly

  1. Pay attention.
  2. Listen carefully.
  3. Speak politely.
  4. Speak kindly.
  5. Be gentle.
  6. Be honest.
  7. Be helpful.
  8. Be generous.
  9. Take turns.
  10. Ask before taking.
  11. Do your best.
  12. Forgive others.