I don’t know about you, but I absolutely love this time of year. The smells, the cheer, the decorations, family gatherings, the yummy foods, and so much more! It’s the time of year we start to reflect on all of the good things that happened throughout the year, make plans and goals for the coming year, and truly appreciate our surroundings…the people in our lives, the blessings we’re about to receive, and the list goes on. It is the Perfect time of year to instill gratitude in our children.
I don’t just mean to instill gratitude for the holidays…lets instill gratitude activities and lessons that children can practice throughout the year! Let’s show our children what it means to be thankful & grateful. In this article I’ve compiled a list of activities and lessons that the kiddos will love doing!
I believe there are two components to instill gratitude in children: Self-love and love for others. Let me tell you how and why these two are equally important.
Instill Gratitude Component #1: Instilling Self-Love
In today’s society, there are so many insecurities children face nowadays and it is so important to raise confident children. I don’t mean that in a conceited or condescending kind of way. I remember getting bullied by those kind of girls when I was in school and those girls just make me cringe.
There is so much talk nowadays about who has the best cell phone, clothes, cars and the list goes on. We need to instill gratitude and self-love in our children to be grateful for what we have, the people in our lives, and most importantly, happy with ourselves and who we are. That we are all unique and special in our own ways.
Instill Gratitude Component #2: Instilling Love for Others
The second component to instill gratitude in our children is love for others. I love this one! It is so important to give back and there are so many ways to do so:
Participate in random acts of kindness challenges. Open doors for others, carry someone’s groceries, or simply give someone a compliment to make their day!
Donate. There are so many ways to donate…things you don’t use anymore, new things, money, or the best one…your time! Spend some time at a veteran’s home with the vets whose family has passed on. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or toy drive. There are so many ways to donate!
Spend time with family. If they live to far away, call them or send them letters and let them know how much you appreciate them. It so important to keep in touch with family!
Some Lessons & Activities to Instill Gratitude in Our Children
Here are some free lessons and activities I’ve compiled to give you some inspiration on ways to instill gratitude in your children. There’s definitely something for everyone!
Six Classroom Activities to Nurture Gratitude from Education World
Lesson Plan: “What is Gratitude?” from Heart-Mind Online
Gratitude Activities for the Classroom from Greater Good Magazine
Thanks! A Strengths-Based Gratitude Curriculum for Tweens and Teens from Berkely.edu
5 Gratitude Lesson Plans from Hofstra University
12 Gratitude Lessons from Spreading Gratitude Rocks
7 Activities for Giving Thanks in the Classroom from Teach for America
31 Gratitude Exercises That Will Boost Your Happiness from Positive Psychology Program
Gratefuls and Grumbles: Helping Kids Develop an Attitude of Gratitude from Health Powered Kids
I hope this article inspired you to instill gratitude in your children. Don’t forget to take advantage and sign up for your freebie Daily Gratitude Journal Worksheet below or get your 35-Page Gratitude Journal for Boys and Girls!
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Your Minnesota Country Girl, Sharla
Sharla Fossen from Minnesota Country Girl is a single mom, Air Force veteran, blogger, homeschool mom to her 14-year-old son with ADHD & alopecia, avid gardener, and fibromyalgia conqueror! She provides tips, encouragement, resources, and inspires families to become self-sufficient on the homestead and in the homeschool. If you’re looking for some guidance and resources on gardening, homeschooling, or taking control of your health, she’s got you covered! You can find her on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram & Twitter!
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