The holidays are here! This year, encourage your child to embrace the joy of giving back and doing good for others. Even though teaching these concepts to little ones can seem challenging, the holiday season is a great time to introduce your children to the importance of giving without expectation.
Liz Ergle, a Primrose parent, is already looking forward to sharing these holiday values with her nearly 2-year-old daughter, and plans to include her in holiday traditions that encourage gratitude and selflessness. Fellow Primrose parent Brad Miller, the father of two young children, is also eager to introduce his little ones to the joy that comes from giving to others and has already thought of a few ideas for how to engage them in lessons and activities that emphasize the importance of giving.
Here are a few tips from these parents on how your family can participate in holiday activities for kids to reinforce lessons in kindness, compassion and giving.
- Bake goodies for your neighbors. Invite your child to help you bake, pack and deliver treat bags (with holiday cookies, roasted nuts or other goodies) to your neighbors. Talk about how much your neighbors will enjoy these treats and how special it will make them feel to receive them.
- Send handmade holiday cards. Encourage your child to make holiday cards for your mail carrier, waste management workers or local public safety officers as a thank you for the work they do all year long. Many cities also have programs for sending holiday cards and letters to deployed military personnel over the holidays.
- Make festive ornaments. Making ornaments is one of many fun holiday crafts your little one will enjoy – and they make great gifts for grandparents too! Try these easy-to-make snowy star ornaments.
- Elf Who Helps. Challenge your children to suggest one good or helpful deed to complete each day as an “Elf Who Helps.” These should be simple things like giving hugs to family members, taking dinner plates to the sink, setting the table, carry laundry to the hamper—anything your child can do on his own.
- Support a family in need. Consider participating in a local toy drive, like Toys for Tots or the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program, to help provide gifts for a family who wouldn’t otherwise receive anything at the holidays. By going shopping together as a family, you and your spouse can model generous behavior for your child and provide a tangible and impactful holiday experience.
- Take your child caroling. Caroling for neighbors may sound old-fashioned, but it can be a special, powerful experience for everyone involved. You may be surprised by how many people open their doors to listen, join in singing and thank you for visiting and spreading holiday cheer.
From our Primrose families to yours, happy holidays!