As parents it is our job to impart our values to our children. Teaching them to be kind and gracious people is a very important thing to do. But to do that, we can’t just talk, we have to model it in action. Here are some ways we can teach these to our kids.
Children are slowly growing up and adjusting to the world they live in, and they’re also gradually exposed to more people. Humans are social species, meaning we have to interact with one another as an intrinsic need. These interactions form relationships and connections with people that we may treasure during our lives.
Learning how to be kind and gratuitous is one way to maintain these social relationships. Kindness, in technical terms, is defined as choosing to do something good for other people, motivated by a person’s genuine and pure intentions. This choice can be as simple as doing a little favor for a friend or something significant such as contributing to a cause or a donation pickup in Long Beach. Either way, the goal should be leading to the greater good with the best intentions at hand.
Gratitude is the quality of showing appreciation, mainly when the person receives an act of kindness. Social interactions are give-and-take processes; being thankful and appreciative after receiving service from others lets the other person know that their efforts are recognized and warmly accepted.
These two qualities comprise a person’s most fundamental social etiquette — being human. To be human is to connect with other people, and these connections are established and kept once a person learns how to communicate their needs and appreciate when they’re met, while also providing for others.
When Should Children Start Learning Kindness and Gratitude?
Learning these behaviors is essential for children as they can guide them throughout their lives and improve their life’s quality. Once the child starts to understand the concept of social selves, it’s best to start teaching them essential words such as ‘thank you’ and allowing them to do their best in making an effort to do something good.
Some Ways To Teach Children Kindness And Gratitude
Children learn through imitations and participating in activities. They can foster these behaviors with the help of their guardians or parents, and some of the ways to teach them these values are as follows:
1. Allow Them To Learn The Concept Of Kindness
Being kind and thoughtful to other beings is a trait seen in almost every being on the planet, and humans are also one of those who have inherent kindness in them. However, the basic concept of being kind and doing good things for other people out of love and good intention should be taught to young children as clearly and concisely as possible, with proper definitions and boundaries explained to them. It teaches them how to be kind properly while also setting appropriate boundaries for themselves regarding giving.
2. Be A Role Model Of Kindness And Gratitude
Children imitate their guardian’s and parents’ actions and behaviors, so it’s crucial that their primary role models also reflect kindness and gratitude. Be sure to do good things and practice these behaviors regularly, especially when around children, to see how these behaviors are done firsthand, allowing them to copy the adult’s behaviors and instilling them in their social behavior and memory.
3. Talk With Them About Things That You’re Grateful For
Make it a habit to practice being thankful for things, whether these may be great or little things. Allow them to say ‘thank you’ at every possible thing, making it a habit they can possess while growing up. Also, teach them to appreciate tangible items, such as gifts, and non-tangible things, such as service and words.
By practicing this regularly, they can grow up to be appreciative and gratuitous human beings in the future.
4. Support A Cause Or An Organization
Another way to teach children is by involving them in a cause or an organization to foster kindness and gratitude, allowing them to do kind things for others while also being grateful and appreciative at the same time of the goodwill they can receive from the organization. By allowing children to be involved in these activities, they can feel a sense of belonging and learn these concepts with the help of a community.
Other children can also get involved, and a group where these children who want their social skills to all be developed can be formed, making a social group of children all learning and giving kindness and gratitude at the same time.
Children can be taught the concepts of kindness and gratitude with the proper guidance and model from their parents and guardians. Some ways to do these are by allowing them to learn the idea of kindness, being a role model, talking with them about things they should be grateful for, and supporting a cause or an organization. With these, they can understand kindness and gratitude while being involved and seeing it from a first-person perspective, allowing them to grow into a kind and appreciative adult.