An Attitude of Gratitude: How to instill a spirit of thankfulness in our kids

teaching kids to be grateful and thankful

This time of year we tend to focus more on gratefulness and giving thanks. One tradition some families might partake in is going around the table at Thanksgiving and saying what you are thankful for. But what about the other 364 days of the year?What if you put this thankful tradition into practice year-round?  While you can’t teach your kids to be thankful in one day, you can help to foster a grateful attitude throughout the whole year.

It starts with you.

You’ve heard it before, and it’s true…the best way to teach your children something, is to model the behavior yourself! If you want your kids to enjoy reading, let them see you curled up with a book in your spare time. In a similar fashion, choose to voice your own gratitude, daily, for all the blessings in your life. Demonstrate your gratefulness by volunteering in your community, church or neighborhood to help inspire your kids to serve and offer a helping hand.

Be thankful in all times.

A true attitude of gratitude is about being thankful throughout the good as well as the bad times. When you or one of your children face a less than ideal situation, encourage some thankfulness training by motivating your kids to think of some things they can be grateful for. Bringing light to the silver lining will help your kids keep things in perspective and be more resilient throughout their lives. Challenges offer the opportunity to put true gratefulness to the test. An attitude of gratitude doesn’t mean your kids aren’t ever unhappy or disappointed, but a spirit of thankfulness can help them put any negative situation into perspective.

More than manners.

Children are usually taught “Please” and “Thank You” at a young age, as simple manners are very important. But how do you also cultivate a spirit of thankfulness? Sometimes these words become habit, but have no meaning to very young children. We can help explain the value and meaning of manners in simple ways. Help your kids write thank you notes after receiving a gift, encourage them to think of something nice they might like to do for others. The act of coloring a picture, making a necklace or crafting an art project to give to someone else helps your child to think about others.

More than me.

Selfishness is the opposite of gratefulness. It’s not so easy to teach little people about being thankful, when we are all wired to look out for number one. A child naturally develops a greater worldview beyond themselves as they age. Considering their family, friends and classmates. Parents can help assist in this development by teaching kids to consider the feelings of others in all situations. Taking turns, sharing, waiting in line, practicing patience: these are all examples of thankfulness training.

At Super Moving, we are grateful for all our friends, family members and clients!

Crafting ideas.

Life gets busy. Sometimes even us adults can forget to be thankful daily and express our gratitude. In the spirit of thankfulness, try to carve out some extra time to craft with your loved ones for a fun reminder of the season. Check out the fun things we found on Pinterest!

What gratitude tradition will you begin?

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