Raising a Grateful Child: What Parents Should Do

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Teaching kids the art of being grateful is a tough job for any parent. Helping them see why they should be thankful or happy about something is a real challenge. Gratitude usually goes hand in hand with appreciation, but they’re generally all about being thankful for the things you have.

It’s a solid fact that almost every kid can have moments of entitlement. But if you don’t want your kids to carry an ungrateful attitude until they get older, you need to start taking action now. Read on to find out more about the art of being grateful and how you can teach it to your kids.

Practice saying “thank you”

Saying “thank you” is a great way to start teaching kids how to be grateful. This phrase can be meaningful and heartfelt. But if you want your kids to make it a habit to say thanks, you need to do the exact thing too. Kids learn faster when they see things in action. Add “thank you” to your daily habits. For instance, you can say “thank you” to your children when they did something for you, their siblings, or others. Your children can quickly adopt the attitude if you show them more gratitude every day.

Give them their own chores

A grateful kid understands the value of hard work. Start by letting them help with the household chores, especially younger ones. You can give them their own daily chores as they get older. They can better understand the value of hard work when they experience it. You can also teach them about the hard work of individuals who contribute to the community, such as doctors, vendors, and farmers. This can help them appreciate the things they receive in life, such as the food on their table.

Use a simple reward system

Reward systems for kids are not necessarily a bad idea. But they require careful strategies to ensure you won’t be raining children that only get things done for a price. Instead, it should give them the motivation to be helpful, generous, kind, and grateful. You can give them small rewards for completing house chores or getting their homework done without you having to remind them. Almost any kid can appreciate simple rewards. The best categories to start are novelty items such as stickers, pins, or magnets, which kids can enjoy collecting. You can opt to buy them from an online novelty souvenir store or find a local one in your area.

man depositing a coin

Teach money management

Just like with adults, money plays a huge role in a child’s ability to be grateful. Teach them how to prioritize and set limits on their spending. Help them learn that it takes time to save up for something they want, and the more they splurge, the farther their goals will be. Family consultants recommend starting by giving them an allowance so that they can have a better grasp on consumption. Money training is essential; they will know that money isn’t just something that appears out of nowhere.

Provide them with experiences

Apart from gifts or money, your kids should also get to collect experiences that they can treasure their whole lives. Collecting experiences can teach them a lot more than just gratitude. It can help them learn more about others and the world and realize valuable lessons. Give them stories that they can share with others. It can even help your kids think about their aspirations and goals in life as they grow older. Experiences can teach your kids to appreciate the small things. You can enroll them in cooking classes, get them tickets to museums, or buy them waterpark or factory tour passes.

Create a gratitude jar

Having a gratitude jar is a fun and interactive way of teaching your kids the right attitude. This can help your kids have an open mind, think about things they’re grateful for, and feel and not gratitude. You can create your own gratitude jar, decorate it, and write on it together with your kids. All you need is an empty plastic jar, decorations, blank slips, and a pen. It’s better if you can write on the gratitude jar as family and read them every week as a new ritual.

Teaching your kids how to be grateful is also helping them experience various interpersonal, physical, and psychological benefits. They will be more generous and kinder to people, experience more positive emotions, and establish healthier relationships with others. Incorporate the practice of gratitude into your family’s daily routine so your children can quickly grasp the idea.

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