Modeling a Generous Spirit

I try to model a generous spirit for my children all year long, but it’s especially easy to do this time of year. There are so many opportunities for teaching children about giving during the holidays!

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Treats
We love to bake treats and deliver them to friends and neighbors during the holidays. There are many ways that kids can be involved in this, such as:

  • Helping with the baking or decorating of treats
  • Putting stickers and bows on packages
  • Helping with delivery (load treats in a wagon to deliver to your neighbors or have the kids help bring cookies to their teachers when they come to school)

Making Cards
If you have a little artist, have them help with holiday cards.  This can mean they decorate envelopes for your family cards or draw and decorate cards for their teachers or friends.

There is a wonderful organization called Cards for Hospitalized Kids (cardsforhospitalizedkids.com). You can make cards (for holidays or any time of the year), mail them to the organization, and they will be distributed to children who are currently hospitalized.  You can find all the details about where to send them and what to have them say on the website.

Giving Tree  
We like to do a giving tree every year, like the one for Life Moves in the classroom at Little Wonders. With toddlers I find it is hard to have them help with picking out toys for others, but there are always many choices that involve things like clothes and personal items. I like to have the kids come to the store and we talk about how we are giving this to someone who doesn’t have the item and how wonderful it is to help people. The kids can carry the items into the classroom and put them under the tree too.

I have also seen giving trees at the library and in stores this time of year. 

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Various Drives and Donations
We like to bring cans or boxes of non-perishable food to the library when we visit.
Other suggestions:

  • Bring last years winter coats to a shelter, such as Life Moves 
  • Donate old books to your library.
  • Purge toys and clothes to make room for new gifts and donate them to Life Moves.

The important part is to have your children help with gathering and delivering the items and talk about how its important in your family to help, give back, and reduce waste.

Have a happy holiday with your Little Wonders! Here’s to celebrating the real meaning of the holidays this year!

~Sandi Arata