Thanksgiving kicks off the holiday season, the perfect time to teach kids about the art of being thankful. There’s plenty to be grateful for, especially with the focus on giving and spending time with loved ones.
Of course, the excitement of receiving presents can be distracting; however, it’s also an opportunity to teach children how to express gratitude. Being grateful can help children focus on giving instead of receiving, which can lead to higher levels of happiness.
Here are a few tips for teaching children the art of being grateful and the importance of giving back this holiday season.
What does it mean to be thankful?
Teaching kids how to identify happiness can help them to connect the feeling with gratitude. Once gratitude is developed, it can be applied to food, toys, and experiences. Older children have likely already learned about thankfulness; however, everyone can be reminded of how to show their appreciation.
Teach By Example
During the holiday season, try to slow down and reflect on what you’re grateful for. Consider the moments that you feel thankful each day and share those experiences with your children. Remember that kids are always paying attention and lead by example!
Gather Clothes and Toys to Donate
A child can understand that not everyone has the same things that they do. Explain to them that some children may not be as lucky as them and encourage them to share what they have with others. Help your children to gather old toys, games, and clothes to donate to those less fortunate. Consider making it an annual tradition.
12 Days of Thankfulness
A gratitude journal is a great way to practice being thankful. It can help if you think of 3-5 things you’re grateful for daily. Having a small daily practice can help children develop their gratitude.
During the holiday season, try to commit to 12 days of being thankful. Each day, spend some time sharing a few things you’re grateful for.
This Thanksgiving, families will gather to celebrate and reflect on the blessings of their lives. This time of year is a wonderful chance to help children develop responsibility and appreciation. Use the holidays to establish a foundation for future traditions.
Remember to let your kids be kids. When they open their presents during your holiday celebration, remind them to say thank you and let them play and have fun.