I have always loved the concept of Thanksgiving. It is really a time to reflect and be thankful for. While, I do realize thanksgiving must be a part of every day life, it is definitely nice to have a day set aside for the purpose. We all need a reminder every now and then.
As kuttyma grows up, it is becoming very essential that I talk to her often about being thankful.
Here are some ways to help raise grateful children,
Say Thank You
Habits start at home and children learn from their parents. Always remember to say thank you to your kids. Also, let your child watch you say thank you (and mean it) to others. Parents are some of the most powerful teachers on earth.
I often find myself saying thank you without meaning it. I say it out of a force of habit, rather than an intimate gesture of gratitude. And then it strikes me. I remind myself to slow down and actually mean the words I say.
Write Thank you Notes
Yes, writing is almost a lost skill. But writing thank you notes is still a beautiful and wonderful gesture. I often write small thank you notes and drop them in kuttyma’s lunch box. It is pleasure to receive one and write one too. Writing down in words makes us appreciate deeds of kindness even more.
At the end of every school year, I make kuttyma write thank you notes for her classmates and teachers. It is always reflective as she looks back and celebrates people.
It is easy to be pretend ignore a child who isn’t appreciative. Don’t. Call out and say it is unacceptable. Sometimes as parents we have to force our children to be thankful. It is a learning process.
Give Back to the Community
Giving back to the community fills us with gratitude. There are so many opportunities to give back to the community and involving kids in such activities definitely drives the point home.
Incorporate Gratitude in your Lifestyle
We have a gratitude jar at home. We write things we are thankful for and drop it in. Some things are simple – like a chance to watch a special show but others run deep, like being thankful for a positive prognosis at the doctor’s.
How do you teach children to be grateful? What are your tips to raise grateful children?