Giving Thanks with Kids

November 27th, 2013 by admin in Family, Gratitude, Holidays
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kids and thanks

I write about gratitude often.  It’s no secret I think it can enhance your life and make you feel good.  I’ve written about ways you can practice gratitude on your own or with your partner.  Lately, I’ve been thinking about ways to practice gratitude with your child(ren).

  • Make a list on your wall

Use butcher paper or a chalkboard to record lists or pictures of things for which you are thankful.  You can encourage your children to list things daily or as they feel them.

  • Create a collage

Tear up old magazines, use photos or other images to make a visual representation of your gratitude.  Give the collage a place of honor (you can even pull it out each Thanksgiving as part of your décor).

  • Turn your tablecloth into a gratitude work of art

Use paper and crayons or a tablecloth and paint to let you child express her thanks.  She may use words or drawings or colors to share her feelings.  You can use this tablecloth as the centerpiece for your Thanksgiving meal.

  • Send postcards of thanks

Who doesn’t love sweet notes in the mail?  Take some time to write thank you notes (or “I’m thankful for you” notes) and send them to loved ones.

  • Make a gratitude altar

Set up a space with found objects, things from nature, pictures of loved ones, special stones or crystals, and other items that make you feel thankful.  Encourage your child to add items to the altar and use it as a way to honor and acknowledge the things and people for which he feels thanks.

  • Model saying, “Thank you.”

It’s a small thing.  The more thankful you are and the more you express it, the more your child will learn that behavior.

This time of year is a great “excuse” or reason to start a gratitude practice.  You don’t have to save all your thanks up for November.  Let this be the start of a regular gratitude practice or family rituals.  It’s amazing to hear what inspires other people’s gratitude  (especially our wee ones).  Gratitude begets gratitude.  Let’s start a thankful chain reaction!

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