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What Are You Thankful For? 5 Tips for Raising Grateful Kids

November 4, 2016

This time of year is always special. We start to close in on times that bring families together and show us how lucky we are and remind us what we are grateful for. Thanksgiving is one of those special times. If you live in Canada this day has already passed but not forgotten, and is coming up on November 24th if you are in the USA. Two other days we take time this month to be thankful for our freedom and service members are Veterans Day and Remembrance Day on November 11th. As parents or guardians, we hope that our children grow up to be grateful for what they have and are humble people that show it through their words and actions with others. Reflecting on this time of year, we wanted to share 5 tips to help raise grateful kids.

It All Starts With You

Our kids are always watching. They want to grow up and be like you and we should never take that lightly. Always be a model for what you want your kids to be and more. Your words and actions are reflected in your child, so be sure to set the best example possible. Always remind your children the love you have for them through words, smiles, hugs, and love. This boosts a child’s self-esteem to want to be a caring individual to others and know what they have in you.

Resist Spoiling

We know that we want our kids to have the best and if we can give it to them, why wouldn’t we? Everything should be in moderation though. We do not want our kids to always get what they want or they will lose sight of what they have and always be looking for the next best thing. When we spoil our children, we dilute gratitude and they lose respect for appreciating what’s in their lives and what it means. This can also create too much appreciation for possessions and not family, friends, and quality time. This isn’t to say we can’t spoil our kids now and again – just remember moderation.

Teach Them to Earn

Teach your kids to spoil themselves through earning things on their own. Have an allowance or have your child participate in household chores to get things they want. This is the most valuable lesson you can teach them that will stay with them for life: hard work pays off. They will not take for granted the things they get when reminded what it took to get them. They will also appreciate what you do for them and the value of restraint with money and possessions. This is also a great opportunity to teach them how to be savvy with their money. Have them collect some toys they no longer play with, and clothes they don’t wear, and bring in their gently-used items to your local Once Upon A Child store. We’ll pay them (you) cash on the spot that can be used to pick up a replacement toy or outfit in our store. Watch this video to learn more about how our buying and selling process works. Anyone can buy and sell gently used kids’ stuff that is recycled back into the community to help others. Share that gratitude – and maybe even gain a little extra spending cash for the holiday season!

Always Use Your Manners

Possibly the easiest thing on this list. We often undervalue the importance of saying “Please” and “Thank you”. These words can take you a long way. Similar to the first item on this list, use your manners often and your children will follow. Point out how it makes others and yourself feel when you are polite. A simple “Thank you” to acknowledge someone can brighten their day, and make you smile too.

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