It is never too early nor too late to begin teaching character to your children.
Steve McChesney has a great article about teaching children the character quality of respect. It can be found at here.
I just spent a month teaching my two-year-old class about respect. We used the word often when correcting unacceptable behavior and we looked for examples of respect or lack of respect in any books we read.
I took Aretha Franklin’s song “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” and changed the words (see below). The children loved it and have really responded well to the teaching. They have grasped the concept of respect as showing kindness and they use the term appropriately, plus they have learned to spell the word. And they are only two years old!! You can see the video below:
R-E-S-P-E-C-T spells respect it’s plain to see.
R-E-S-P-E-C-T means I’m kind to you; you’re kind to me.
Respect to your mom
Respect to your dad
Respect to your friends
Respect for their things
Respect to your teachers
Respect for your school
R-E-S-P-E-C-T This is what it means to me!! (clapping as you say this)