Thinking about others isn’t always something that comes easily to everyone. Encouraging thoughtfulness in children leads to a life full of kindness.
As we rush through our daily lives of work and children, it is easy to forget to think of others. Thoughtfulness doesn’t always come naturally to everyone, and it can be hard to remember that generosity and kindness should be part of our daily life.
The awesome thing is that the more often we practice thoughtfulness, the more it becomes part of our daily life. The more that we practice thoughtfulness in our daily lives, the more that our children will want to practice what they see. Children are little sponges, soaking up the good, and the bad. Let there be more good than bad to absorb!
1. Bake Goodies for Friends and Neighbors.
The holiday season is the perfect time to think about those who live closest to us. My kids love our simple tradition of baking goodies for our neighbors. Because of this simple gesture, my kids are quick to want to take over extra loaves of fresh bread, cupcakes or surplus veggies we grow. Do you remember your neighbors?
2. Extend a Hand Often.
Does your friend need help to move this weekend? Is your grandmother sick and needing a warm meal? Every day, we could find ways to extend a hand. That doesn’t mean we have to do something every single day, but remember to help if you can. It might be driving a friend to work or delivering groceries to a friend with a new baby.
3. Buy Meals for Others.
Have you ever noticed someone in uniform at a restaurant? Is there a mother behind you in line to get coffee? Offer to pick up their meals! These gestures never go unnoticed by our kids. You never know; that person may need a smile for the day.
4. Donate Food
Teaching our kids about those who are less fortunate than us is important. Homelessness is a real issue in America. If everyone who had extra money donated to those without food, we could feed our nation. Teach your kids to think about those who are less fortunate and remember your local shelters when purchasing groceries. Find out what they need before you head to the store.
Finding ways to encourage thoughtfulness in children means paying attention to the world around us. It means focusing on others who may need our help but don’t want to ask. You may have to go out of your way, but teaching your children that other people are worth the time and effort is important.