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Teach Your Child the Joy of Giving

There is nothing more refreshing, more inspiring, more wonderful than the smile on the face of someone you have just done something helpful for or when they receive a gift. There is an immense feeling of pride that rushes over us when we have given someone a gift that they might have needed, loved or enjoy greatly. That is primarily why the hit TV show, “Extreme Makeover home edition, Eis so popular, the show’s hosts, volunteers, construction workers, and viewers alike all feel the joy of giving a family the dream of a lifetime.

Offering a hand to someone who needs it, giving away the things we don’t use to those who don’t have much, and just sending a note of thought to a distant friend or relative. These are the simple ideas of giving, the random acts of kindness such as helping a senior citizen with their groceries, allowing someone in front of you in the grocery store that has one item compared to your many items, or simply picking something up for someone; these are just a few simple things that will show we care.

Preschool
While it is hard to conduct ourselves as perfectly as we would like with work, bills, responsibilities, obligations and children, we sometimes get lost in the maze of life. Sometimes we just don’t want to read a book, or tuck our children in bed at night, if you felt this way you’d be no different than thousands of other parents out there and sometimes it’s okay. As much as possible be giving of quality time to your children this will create an atmosphere that encourages children to feel loved, needed and cared for, which will ultimately be a quality they will easily display to others.

Sharing is more than just a great quality to have it really shows that we are giving others. Young children may have a tougher time sharing, especially if they are an only child or are accustomed to playing alone. Encouraging sharing starts with the understanding that we are all sharing of ourselves, “Mom shares with you all the wonderful things in life and it feels so nice to share with you, don’t you want to share your toys with others and see your friends play happily.”

Main points to address:

  • Model a caring behavior.
  • Spend quality time with your child.
  • Encourage sharing.

Grades K-6th
A one-on-one talk with children can change more things in a child’s life than anything else would be able to. Think of how special this has made you feel in the past when your role model or mentor took out the time to listen to you and advise (not preach) you on various topics. Ask your children how they feel about others (the homeless, other students, senior citizens, etc.) and listen closely to their thoughts and feelings. Model your thoughts around theirs “I also feel terrible for people who don’t have homes, do you think there is anything we can do to help them?”

If they feel there is, this can take you to your next process of volunteering at homeless shelters, charity events, or other needy organizations. Allow your child to feel as though this was there idea (if they say they would like to then really, it was) and congratulate them on caring enough to take action. Many people can feel bad about certain situations; it’s those who take action that will change the world. Let them know that they are one of those people who could ultimately change the world.

However, we don’t have to stop with the homeless shelters, what about your local community. Did a new neighbor move in? Do you have a senior living alone? If so, make an effort to welcome that new neighbor with a welcome package, make sure they know the area or have information about community resources or other information you have found helpful when you first moved in. Take a meal to that senior living alone and make sure they have someone taking them to the store or there doctor’s appointments. If not, “normally, Ea transportation unit is designated for seniors. On the other hand, you can contact local resource centers to see if there are resources that can potentially help seniors in need. You and your child can also get involved with neighborhood events or charity drives locally.

Main points to address:

  • Volunteer at local charities and/or events.
  • Talk to children about caring.
  • Help neighbors or get involved with neighborhood events.

Resources
Resources that can help you in your venture include:

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