How to Teach Etiquette Classes

Fancy table set up with glasses, plates and silverware
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Teaching etiquette is a rewarding and potentially lucrative field that can benefit both children and adult students. You could look for a community college that offers etiquette classes at night, or you could start your own etiquette classes as a freelance instructor. Teaching a successful etiquette class involves knowing the age level of your students and being consistent with your expectations.

Design your curriculum. In order to do this, you must decide if your etiquette classes will have a specific focus, such as dining etiquette for children or gift-giving etiquette. Create a list of different points you wish to cover over the course of your classes. For example, one class may focus on "Etiquette Phrases" or "Phone Etiquette," while the next involves a mock dinner table role play.

Write a detailed lesson plan for each class based on the topics you included in your curriculum. Decide whether you will be grading your students, and if so, how you will grade them. While papers and tests are easy to grade, etiquette classes often involve a certain amount of role playing and group activities. Decide on a grading rubric for these plans ahead of time.

Gather the necessary materials for your classes. Websites like Teacher Planet and ESL Printables offer a wide selection of worksheets, games and activities that focus on everything from business etiquette to setting a proper table. If you are including role play in your classes, consider the extra materials you may need, such as a table, chairs and dinnerware. Also consider finding a few clips from popular movies showing people exhibiting both good and bad etiquette, and have students observe and generate a discussion.

Create a loose schedule for each class. While every class might have a different topic, you can establish a routine that will make students comfortable and give you confidence as a teacher. For example, a class on dining etiquette can begin with an open discussion of the topic and a movie observation, followed by a worksheet on place settings and ending with a role play in which students have a mock dinner party. The class on phone etiquette can begin with a discussion, followed by listening to an audio clip demonstrating good and bad phone behavior. Next could be a written assignment on how to answer the phone, and finally the students could pair off and act out phone calls for specific situations.

Kara Page has been a freelance writer and editor since 2007. She maintains several blogs on travel, music, food and more. She is also a contributing writer for Suite101 and has articles published on eHow and Answerbag. Page holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of North Texas.