5 ways to teach your children gratitude

This World Gratitude Day take some time to reflect on the amazing things you have in your life, smile and realise that you are thankful. It’s a good feeling, isn’t it? That why it important to teach your children to be grateful. Here are 5 tips to get started…

1. Re-enforcement

Re-enforce saying thank you over and over, each and every day. It might take a while but it will build up to be used over a lifetime. This might be explaining why we say thank you in different situations, writing or drawing thank you cards or using role play when playing to show when ‘thank you’s’ are required.

2. Setting an example

Practise what you preach and make sure to thank people in your day. Don’t let this stop, even if you are busy or distracted. Remember to thank people who help us every day by providing a service which makes your life better, like the bus driver or lollypop lady. Ensure you talk about the positive things in your day, even if it has been stressful; outweigh your complaints with positive messages.

3. Acknowledging good things

Discuss with your children something that was good in their day. Ideally this would be every day as part of their bed time routine, in the car on the way home or over dinner. This could be something they enjoyed the most in their day and appreciated.

4. Giving and volunteering

It is important to teach the gift of giving and helping your children to feel good when someone else shows gratitude towards them. This could be giving away toys that are no longer used to charity or handing them down to a younger sibling or friend. This might also be taking some time out of their usual schedule to volunteer for a good cause, or tagging along while you do

5. Just looking

Before going shopping set the boundaries that you are not buying anything today, you are going to buy groceries or just window shopping. This will help to eliminate the association of your child having something bought for them every time a shopping trip is mentioned. It will also help to make them more grateful when they are bought a gift. Keep it a surprise when you do get your child a gift. How about waiting until they are home to give it to them and they will be surprised and delighted which will enforce their gratuity.

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