There’s more science than ever showing gratitude mindsets help people live happier, healthier lives.
Learning gratitude doesn’t happen overnight, it’s a behavior that can be taught and reinforced over time. Teaching kids about gratitude requires them to observe from an outside lens. In doing so, they can learn to form healthy relationships with themselves and others.
So, how do we introduce gratitude to children?
Gratitude can be experienced through direct experience, through dramatization, and through adult modeling. Try these ways to practice gratitude with your little ones:
Talk about gratitude
Use the dinner table to talk about gratitude.
Discuss ‘what is gratitude?’ It’s not just saying ‘thank you’... it’s about having a deeper appreciation for the things you are thankful for.
Name a few things you are grateful for.
Talk about ways to express gratitude other than saying ‘thank you’, such as doing a kind gesture, writing a card, helping out a friend, etc.
Practice yoga and mindfulness
Yoga teaches us to be grateful for our health and bodies. Use our yoga cards and mindfulness activities found in our Gratitude Yoga Cards.
We created this resource filled with games, meditations, activities, crafts, and yoga poses to help get in touch with a sense of gratitude.
Illustrator Note: I have always been grateful for creative expression and I like to model that in our resources. Kids benefit from having a creative outlet, so many of the activities found in this packet enable kids to express themselves while learning about important themes, such as gratitude and kindness. Kids can express gratitude through words, drawing, coloring and thought.
Read a book
Share a book with a loved one about gratitude. After reading, ask questions thematic questions about gratitude.
Some books we love:
Start a Gratitude Journal
Every day, write down one thing that you were thankful for! It can be a person, thing, or event from the day.
We created a free printable gratitude worksheet that kids can use to write and draw what they are thankful for. Invite kids to practice gratitude with this free download. This is a great activity for the Thanksgiving holiday!