Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Teach them Gratitude

As child care providers, we aren't just there to be eyes on kids running around for 4 hours after school.  We have an opportunity a responsibility to enrich them as well. 

One of the fitting themes for this season, is to facilitate an "Attitude of Gratitude".  There are many ways to do this.
  • Be an example! 
    • Always the BEST way to teach something.  When you ask them to do something, say "Thank You, I appreciate that!" Once they have done it.
    • Allow them to see you thanking people for every little thing that is done for you.
      • Thank the custodian for getting the garbage.
      • Thank the school secretary for bringing you a note.
      • Thank parents for ______  when their child is picked up.
      • Mention how grateful you are that someone did something or another for you today.
  • Write Thank You notes
    • I have my students discuss and decide on a person in our lives to thank each week.  I make a large card that they all sign and present to that person.
      • They want to write cards to their teachers, principal, custodian, the mail man, local police, veterans, parents, etc.
  • Do a service project.
    • We have done several over the years, including cards for Veterans, visiting a nursing home and singing carols, collecting change to buy a child from a giving tree presents, helping the school facilitate the canned food drive, etc.
  • Teaching Manners
    • Once of the best ways to show gratitude is to be respectful.  Teaching students about common courtesy and manners is important because sometimes they don't even realize that they are being rude. 
    • Thanksgiving is a great excuse to review table manners. 
      • Have students use PROPER table manners at snack time, giving them the opportunity to ask for something to be passed, waiting until everyone has their food, or cleaning up after themselves.

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