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Teaching Our Children to Be Thankful

As parents, teaching our children to be thankful is not always an easy task to do.  This time of year, especially, when there is often an expectation of gifts and over-indulgence it can be even more difficult.

Teaching Our Children To Be Thankful

In our household, there is a constant awareness on the importance of gratitude.  We have our family gratitude jar and regularly focus on what we DO have versus what we DON’T have compared to others.

Even today, manners still go a long way. Saying “please” and “thank you” may seem like simple pleasantries to some, but instilling these pleasantries will help our children to remember the importance of being pleasant, humble and polite.

Remember, it is okay to say no.  Really, it is.  By not giving in to all of our children’s demands, it helps them to appreciate our “yes” more.

This time of year is typically one that focuses on giving to others – food drives, toy drives, coat drives, monetary donations. I challenge parents to continue that focus year-round with a monthly giving project. It could be as simple as donating books to a shelter or collecting donations for a local organization.

In the end, the best way to teach our children is to show them. By being an example and letting our actions speak for us, we can give our children a pattern to model throughout their lives.

Chime in, Divas! What ways to do you teach or have you taught gratitude to your children?

Thankful Thursday

 Each Thursday on Divas With A Purpose, we pause to reflect on what we’re thankful for. Gratitude is a huge part of my life. A few years ago I made a conscious decision to reflect more on what I had versus what I did not have – since then I’ve seen a considerable positive change in my attitude and demeanor even in stressful situations. I encourage my supporters to take a moment to think about what they have to be thankful for. Feel free to share below in the comments – you never know how you’ll inspire and motivate someone else.

15 thoughts on “Teaching Our Children to Be Thankful

  1. seriouslynatural says:

    Yes, children need to be thankful and respectful and aware the world does not revolve around them. I have two kids and I remind them there are others who have less and need more. I also let them know when we are low on things and they may need to wait and I have never had an issue with that when they became older and understood the reality of not having enough. (never on necessities but on wants) Manners go a long way and many (including adults) do not use them but I make sure my children do because they will be respectful and polite just as I was taught to be.

    Great post.

    • Michelle says:

      Love this! Today’s society seems to be filled with children (and adults) that have a “I want it. Not now, but yesterday” mentality. And I won’t even touch on the lack of manners that I see – even in a professional setting. Thank you for sharing your insight!

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  3. foodfashionandflow (@FoodfashinFlow) says:

    It is definitely crucial to teach children to be thankful. I have to constantly reinforce this to my 6 year old son. He is an only child that sometimes has a since of entitlement because he does not have siblings. He is very well mannered and I always teach him that no matter what he has, or doesn’t have to always be thankful.

    • Michelle says:

      So very true! Great to hear you are reinforcing gratitude at an early age. Thank you for your input ~ especially from the viewpoint of a mother with only one child.

  4. thelovelyphotog says:

    I definitely agree with you! Even though my daughter is 2, she knows how to say please, thank you, and bless you. I’m raising to understand manners and respect. I want my daughter to understand that these things are most important in life and being well mannered is the #1 priority for raising an obedient child. Great post! It sparks conversation :)

    • Michelle says:

      Now that is awesome! The earlier we get our little ones started the easier – it becomes a way of life and the norm to have good manners and express pleasantries. Thank you for chiming in!

  5. Whitney James says:

    Manners and gratitude are very important, I agree 100%. I also agree that this time of year (and all year), volunteering is a wonderful way to practice giving back. It’s almost therapeutic in a way. My 11 year old sister has learned the importance of giving back and I’m so happy my parents exposed her to certain community service and volunteering opportunities. at a young age. I grew up the same way. When I do have children, I plan to instill the same values. Great post!


    • Michelle says:

      Yes! Volunteering and giving back in a hands-on manner makes a huge difference in reinforcing the values we’re attempting to instill in our children. Thank you, Whitney, for pointing that out!

  6. Felicia says:

    It is SO important to teach children gratitude and to be thankful. I don’t have any children currently, but in my field, I see a lot of children. There are certainly some that could learn more about being thankful for what they have. In addition, it’s really sad to see so many children (and adults for that matter) who do not know how to use their manners or to say “please” and “thank you.” There’s so much to be taught and sometimes it seems like the really important things like being thankful and using manners fall at the wayside.

  7. A. M. Blake (@ambde) says:

    Yes, and it’s important to start young before “the world gets them” because after that it may be too late. Happy Thankful Thursday Diva and stay blessed!

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  9. Ugochi Jolomi says:

    In my home we try to show our boys how to say “thank you” by thanking them for everything they do for us, from errands, to chores…
    Thanks for sharing and hosting us Michelle, do have a super blessed day!

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  11. @thetravelguru_ says:

    I don’t have kids but I spend tons of time with my niece and nephew. They are expected to say please and thank you, I sit in my car and wait for my nephew to open my door and he will literally run to the car so he can open the door for me when we are leaving. We are collectively teaching him how to be a gentleman and he’s doing very well.


Join in the Discussion, Diva :)