- August 9, 2012
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Being generous and giving to others sounds like such a simple concept. It is something that we all want of our kids. Kids learn everything by example though, and sometimes our giving habits are not very visible to our kids. They may not see us drop off that box to Good Will, or see that check you wrote to your favorite charity. This is why talking about what you are doing, and involving your kids can be so important. When I go through my closet sorting out clothes that I would like to donate, I make sure my kids are around to see it. I make sure I tell them what I am doing and why. Each time I have done this (about twice a year for me) my older kids always want to do the same in their closets.
Kids learn everything by example
I talk about how happy it makes me knowing that the things I cannot use anymore will still be put to use by others. Kids want to be happy too, so they will often offer up some of their goodies too. I found it difficult at first to talk about giving to others. It felt cheesy and fake to say, “I want to give this birthday present to Grandma because I know it will make her happy, and that will make me happy.” But as it turns out, that sentence went a long way with my kids. Suddenly they wanted to give stuff to their friends because it would “make them happy.” We are currently in the process of learning that giving doesn’t always have to be a thing, but can be a gift of time as well. We are trying to do nice things for our neighbors (helping out with yard work, improvement projects, etc.). It has been fun, and we still have a lot to learn.
Filed in: Parents