Teaching Kids to be Generous
With the holiday season in full swing, it is a great time to teach children about generosity and gratitude. However, developing a servant heart and a spirit of giving is a trait that can be focused on all year long. By taking into consideration the development stage of a child it can be started early in small ways and then developed into bigger projects as the child grows. Here’s how:
Model generosity: Look for ways in your own life that you can be generous to others. Donate money or gifts to a favorite charity. Volunteer your time. Look for small ways that you can lift others up every day in word and deed.
Talk about generosity: Don’t assume that students recognize acts of generosity. Give them words and vocabulary that helps them conceptualize and recognize it on their own. Point out acts of generosity in every day life no matter how large or small. It is especially important to point out acts of generosity on the part of other children so that kids recognize their own responsibilities and opportunities to be generous.
Practice generosity and hospitality: Include children in gift giving and preparing for guests. Make it a positive and thoughtful experience by asking children for their opinions and ideas when choosing gifts or preparing for a holiday. Develop empathy by asking children to think about how others will feel when they are the recipients of their actions.
Determining a child’s interests and concerns and then finding ways to serve in those areas is the best way to get kids involved. Even young children can learn to give food, toys or clothing to those in need. The best and most life changing service however, is service that involves giving of more than our excess. It involves giving our time and energy. Service that moves us out of our comfort zone and challenges us to make a difference develops children and ultimately adults, of empathy and generosity.
How do you teach children to be generous and develop a servant heart? I’d love to hear in the comment section!
School Counselor Resource
Wyatt the Wonder Dog Learns about Giving
It’s almost Christmas and Wyatt the Wonder Dog is wondering how long he will have to wait until the big day and what gifts he will get. His mother however, has a more important question, “What will you give for Christmas?” Join Wyatt as he learns a valuable lesson about how anyone can be generous and giving at Christmas and all through the year.
With Wyatt the Wonder Dog as their guide, children learn the value of generosity and what it means to give from the heart. Lynne Watts deftly weaves this powerful lesson in a delightfully entertaining story sure to appeal to both children and parents.~ Martha Jane Orlando, author of Children in the Garden
The Elementary School Counselor Book of Leadership Lesson Plans
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