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To be fed up that nursery taught DD "sorry"?

(101 Posts)
tallulah Sun 05-Jun-11 19:39:43

... without an appreciation of what it actually entails?

I don't know how other 4 yos are but my DD has taken to "sorry" like a hail mary. sad Nursery insist they say sorry, which would be OK if she meant it, but at home if we tell her off/ ask her to stop doing something she just blithely says "sorry" and then carries on doing it. It's as if she thinks that the word is enough to absolve her and she doesn't need to actually modify her behaviour in any way.

It is driving us demented. I would rather she didn't say sorry at all but that's going against what nursery is doing.

Any suggestions?

MamaChocoholic Sun 05-Jun-11 19:41:21

what would you rather she did if she didn't say sorry? teach her to do this. an additional sorry won't hurt.

squeakytoy Sun 05-Jun-11 19:42:23

Yes, you are being unreasonable. You should have taught a 4yo to say it herself by now in a way so that she understands why she is saying it.

bupcakesandcunting Sun 05-Jun-11 19:42:34

How will she learn what it means unless she is taught? I would presume that the nursery are teaching her to say sorry after she has done something wrong? I understand your frustration because my 4 year old does the same, but 4 year olds have no feelings of empathy. They have to start learning sometime that their actions might affect others. Teaching to say "sorry" is as good a place to start as any.

TheFlyingOnion Sun 05-Jun-11 19:42:36

so teach her that when she says sorry, she has to then stop doing the naughty behaviour.

Or do you expect the nursery to do it all for you?


Madlizzy Sun 05-Jun-11 19:42:39

She has to be taught to apologise for her actions, and the understanding will be there to a degree. For instance, if she has hurt another child, then she will be told that it's not nice to hurt her friends and be asked to apologise. The carrying on at home is a normal 4 year old pushing the boundaries. You shouldn't be annoyed at the nursery for this.

CrapBag Sun 05-Jun-11 19:45:11

YABU. I can't believe you have't taught a 4 year old to say this. My DS is 3 and he says it and carries on and uses the word meaninglessly but thats no excuse not to say it. He does know what it means and he does use it genuinely.

What do you get her to do when she does something to another child/person if you don't get her to appologise to them?

Blu Sun 05-Jun-11 19:45:55

She reached 4 without knowing what 'sorry' means, or using it?

The problem is in the lack of understanding, rather than the word.

Use your parenting power to explain in a way she can understand.

Tell her sorry is a feeling, and is short for " I am sad I hurt you / your toy, I won't do it again".

Come on: 4 year olds can understand "sorry".

(disclaimer for any learning difficulties or other factors)

SingleFosterMum Sun 05-Jun-11 19:47:10

My 2 year old says sorry.
He knows if he's done something he shouldn't have and he says sorry.
Am shocked that she only learnt it when 4.

All you need to do is explain to her why she shouldn't do something and if she does it again then there will be consequences.
oh and yes yabu

Itsjustafleshwound Sun 05-Jun-11 19:47:13

Ask her to complete the sentence 'sorry ... because ....' - even if it is to acknowledge that it makes XXX sad/angry

My 6yo DS uses sorry like it is going out of fashion under the mistaken belief that it will prevent her being told off and punished

snailoon Sun 05-Jun-11 19:56:21

I agree with you. I also hate please and thank you when they aren't sincere. My least favourite is "thank you for having me" in a whiny sing-song after a lot of prodding from mum. I much prefer kids' natural enthusiasm, spoken in their own words "I'm so hungry; can I have some grapes?" spoken in a lively way is much nicer than the much practised, parrot-like: "please may I have some grapes?"
Of course everyone needs to learn how to thank and to apologise with grace. I just get annoyed by the phoniness of teaching kids to repeat certain formulae until they can hardly express a spontaneous feeling.

Grabaspoon Sun 05-Jun-11 19:57:38

We used to get the 1 year olds at nursery to say Sorry when they hurt/bit each other - I can't believe she's 4 and only recently learnt it.

I understand how waring it is for them to say sorry and then continue but it is the grown ups role to sanction what she is saying sorry for, explain why it's wrong, stop her doing it again.

GwendolineMaryLacey Sun 05-Jun-11 19:58:04

Agree with everyone else. How has she got to this age without understanding and using the word sorry?

Firawla Sun 05-Jun-11 19:58:56

yabu, the problem is that she keeps on doing the thing she's told not to, not that she says sorry, and i agree with other posters she should have been taught this before 4 years old anyway. most children know to say sorry at 2 yrs or younger, you're not doing her any favours if you teach her theres no need to say it

Goblinchild Sun 05-Jun-11 19:59:52

'Agree with everyone else. How has she got to this age without understanding and using the word sorry?'

I know several adults in this category.

PenguinArmy Sun 05-Jun-11 20:01:09

Actually a lot of children seem to taught sorry means an end to it and carry on without reflecting on what happened properly or to connect the dots and stop the behaviour in the long run.

I personally understand the school of thought where you don't tell them to say sorry/thank you as a mandatory thing but to lead by example so that when they start saying it they do so for the right reasons.

EricNorthmansMistress Sun 05-Jun-11 20:01:41

YABU! My 2yo says sorry when he has done wrong, I think it's very important. He might not understand remorse fully but he's learning appropriate social responses. Why haven't you taught a 4yo about saying sorry? And it's completely pathetic to wish she hadn't been taught it because she doesn't mean it - teach her how to mean it for goodness sake! <boggling>

2cats2many Sun 05-Jun-11 20:02:22

YABU. What a ridiculous objection.

DoMeDon Sun 05-Jun-11 20:04:56

YABVU - DD is 19mo and says sorry- she sometimes gets it muddled and doesn't always use it appropriately (she's only a baby though so we let her off wink), but if she pinches/bites and I tell her she has hurt me she says sorry and gives me a cuddle.

Never to young to teach manners/kindness/etc. All this they don't understand stuff is bolleaux - they understand what you teach them.

friends nursery refuses to ask DC to say sorry - they say it on behalf of the 'offending' child - 'Sorry on behalf of Tarquinata' - GAH hmm

AlpinePony Sun 05-Jun-11 20:04:58

Why don't you stop her doing the unwanted thing? You are the parent, or is the nursery responsible for teaching her values?

Yabu of course.

newportstateofmind Sun 05-Jun-11 20:05:40

My DS has been expected to say 'sorry' since he was about 18 mo. He can't say the word but he hugs the person he is 'apologising' to. He understands that 'sorry' means he has done something wrong and must stop doing it.

DoMeDon Sun 05-Jun-11 20:05:55


UrsulaBuffay Sun 05-Jun-11 20:07:15

I'm confused as the parent of a 2yr old how a child gets to be 4 without learning 'sorry'?

abbierhodes Sun 05-Jun-11 20:07:28

What's wrong with teaching 'phoney' manners? My grandmother bought me the worlds most hideous pyjamas for Christmas- she got a hug, a kiss and a thank you. My children are taught that some things are good manners whether you mean them or not.

I also agree with everyone who says that you should have taught her this yourself long before now.

QuickLookBusy Sun 05-Jun-11 20:07:41

Agree with everyone else. Do what Itsjustafleahwound suggests, get her to to verbalise why she is sorry.

I can't believe she has got to 4 and hasn't heard the word before.

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