Now that November is here, many of us start thinking about the turkey day. Even though many people seem to forget that it is not just a national holiday, but a true “family reunion” kind of celebration. There are certain morals you can transfer to your children through the metaphors in connection with this day.
The importance of giving thanks
It is our duty as parents to develop thankfulness in our children. It is sort of a “superhero” in the book of emotions. Giving thanks should not apply to just giving an automated response – Thank you! – to someone; it should actually involve being truly thankful for the people you are surrounded with, the things you have or get from other people, and for other non-materialistic things. In fact, a recent study showed that one of the most important characteristics kids develop in early age is gratitude, which can be connected to their overall happiness later in life, the study suggests.
How to be grateful
Since Thanksgiving is usually celebrated within the family circle, this occasion is a perfect opportunity for all of us to thank for good health, harvest and many other things, including the little ones. Here is how you can develop and encourage thankfulness in your children:
- Extend giving thanks at dinner to all year long – Saying thank you for the meal in front of them does not need to be said out loud. You can tell them that it is perfectly okay to say Thank you silently, and not forget to do it every night, either at dinner or before bedtime.
- Make a thanks-giving nook – You can encourage your family members to post a thank you note on the fridge or the cork board whenever they feel thankful for something, so that everyone can see their gratitude.
- Learning from experience – Many psychologists believe that kids learn from experience, that is – from what they see. Since they spend the majority of their lives with you, remember to be a good thankfulness model and show it in front of them on every occasion. Be it in the supermarket, at the park, or in the street with a perfect stranger. You really need to show that you care if you want your child to copy that emotion.
- Thankful role models – According to Health Guidance, role models are good for your child’s development because they can influence their decision making and help them overcome certain situations in life. Modern kids can find role models in movie or comic book superheroes. Superheroes be thankful for overcoming every obstacle, for being so strong to survive every battle. If you happen to throw a party for your kid, you can make it a theme party, and have everyone dress up as heroes – to feel as one for just a moment or two – and be thankful for having such great parents.
Even though Thanksgiving occurs only once a year, being thankful should be an emotion that extends throughout the entire year. If you manage to sparkle it in your kid, and see that it truly feels that way, it can be said with certainty that you succeeded as a parent.