Teaching Kids to be Grateful.
Teaching kids to have gratitude involves showing them how to see their situations and the things around them with a sense of appreciation rather than focusing on what may not be ideal. This is an abstract skill that isn’t always easy to teach.
However, there are ways to help your child engage at the heart level with these simple gratitude exercises, which can be enhanced with arts and crafts and other fun activities to make them more engaging.
Keep a Daily Gratitude List.
This activity can take many forms and can be done any time of day. For older kids, suggest that they write 3 things they’re thankful for each day, without ever repeating a blessing. This can be challenging, but it can help your child to learn to ‘dig deep’ for blessings when they find themselves feeling down.
Start a Gratitude Jar.
This practice is similar to a gratitude list, but can hold the things your child is most thankful for. They can also decorate the jar or can with images and other items that represent the blessings inside.
Play “Name Your Blessings’ at Dinner.
Before enjoying dinner together, take a moment to allow everyone to name something they’re thankful for, no matter how big or small. This activity promotes a positive state of mind and allows you and your family to focus on gratitude together.
Tell your children you’re grateful to have them.
Within all of this teaching of gratitude, remember to remind your kids how much you appreciate them. Be specific, such as telling them you’re grateful for their smiles or their hard work at school. This is a practice that boosts self-esteem and shows that gratitude extends beyond the material level.
Have them pitch in for material things.
If your children get an allowance or a money jar that family members add to periodically, suggest that they pitch in for the things that you buy for them. Although they may be resistant initially, kids often are surprised by the sense of pride that comes with taking ownership in this way.
Write thank you notes.
You can keep printed thank you notes on hand, or your child can create their own for this thoughtful practice. Everyone thinks extra fondly of certain people in their life from time to time, and having thank you notes around makes it easy to write down these thankful thoughts and send it to them the old-fashioned way.
Contact us at Country Club Montessori School of Mansfield, TX for more information about teaching your children an attitude of gratitude.