How to Teach Your Child Gratitude
Thanksgiving is a special day for us to celebrate all that we are grateful for. However, you really should express gratitude every single day. It is true. Gratitude is the key to success, and we can get our little ones off to a good start using these Fun Ways to Teach Kids Gratitude.
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Thank You Jar
We made our own “Thank You” Jar a few years ago, and the kids have been enjoying this concept ever since.
We simply write out whatever it is we are grateful for in that moment on a small piece of paper, then we fold it up and add it to the jar. Typically, we wait until the end of the year to read through all of our Thank Yous we have accumulated in the jar throughout the year. We then add those papers to a scrapbook for us to cherish those blessings for many years to come.
There are lots of fun Gratitude Journals out there for kids. You can even grab a regular notebook, and use it to write about all the things you are so grateful for in your life. This is especially a great idea for older children.
Thanksgiving Advent Calendar
While Advent Calendars are most commonly used around Christmas, they can also be really helpful leading up to Thanksgiving Day. Instead of surprising the kiddos with a small treat each day, use this as an opportunity for them to reflect on their many blessings.
Handmade Thank You Cards
Spend some time each week making Thank You Cards as a family. Carry a few with you when you are on the go. Children can hand these out to servers at restaurants, teachers, cashiers, etc. They will feel so proud watching the recipient’s face light up as they accept one of these sweet handmade cards.
Donate some of your time to community service efforts. This is a good way for children to see how blessed they really are. Through their service to those in need, they will come to understand that they have so much to be grateful for.
Thank You Scroll
Make a scroll filled with all the things you are grateful for. You can hang this somewhere in your home, and just watch it grow longer and longer each day.
Give a Smile Card
Join the Smile Chain, by ordering some of these “Just Smile” Cards for the kids to hand out to someone who looks like they could use some encouragement. This act teaches children to be grateful for even the small things in life, and pay it forward.
Tree of Gratitude
Make a Tree of Gratitude you can showcase in your home. Watch the tree grow bigger and more beautiful every time you add a touch of gratitude to it.
ABCs of Thanksgiving
This is a fun activity for younger children starting to learn their ABCs. Complete the chart with something you are thankful for that begins with each letter.
Thank You Cootie Catcher
Cootie Catchers are always lots of fun to play with, but what makes this one even better is that it encourages children to acknowledge all the reasons they have to be grateful.
Reading is always a great way to learn. With so many awesome children’s books on gratitude on the market, there is an endless sea of opportunities to introduce this concept to children during storytime.
Some good books on thankfulness are: Today I Am Grateful: Adventures in Gratitude, Before You Sleep: A Bedtime Book of Gratitude, and Do You See What I See?
Family Gratitude Board
Similar to a Vision Board, a Family Gratitude Board can come to life with images of all of the wonderful aspects of your life you just want to say “Thank you” for.
Through these activities, your child will learn how to live their best life early on. They will make great contributions to society, and stay connected to their happiness just through learning to say “Thank you.”
We would love for you to share some of your favorite ways to show gratitude in the comments below.