10 Nov November Newsletter
This month’s newsletter comes to us in the form of giving thanks. November is a month to give back — whether that’s to your community, your friends, your family, or even to your beloved furry friends. It’s also a time to reflect on what we already have in our lives and how appreciative we are of those little things. Maybe for you, as a parent, it’s simply waking up every day in a bed or having a roof over your head and a family that loves you. These are the tiny moments and things we should be appreciative of every day of our lives, and so should our children. Our newsletter explores this notion of being thankful and teaching our children to understand what it truly means and the many forms that thankfulness can present itself to us.
As parents and teachers, we rightly spend a lot of time teaching our kids to say “thank you,” but just as important is teaching them to be thankful. Thanksgiving is a wonderful day; despite the occasional fracas, everyone is in a wonderful mood — and because of the promise of same-age cousins and a heckuva lot of good food, even the teenagers aren’t sullen. Maybe part of the reason is because we are all focusing on our gratitude.
Teaching children to be thankful is two-fold. First, it is crucial as an everyday disciplinary tool, i.e. “you get what you get, and you don’t get upset,” but children can, and often will, internalize that message as negative, which, in a sense, it is, and that’s okay. Try as we might, “negative” feelings or situations cannot be avoided — all we can do is react. That’s where the second type of teaching thankfulness comes in. Feeling thankful every day, for the things they see most every day, can act as a buffer of sorts when things don’t go their way, because those happy feelings of gratitude for their mommies and daddies, brother or sister, new toy, or favorite food can all come to the rescue much more quickly, and with enough practice, automatically!
Teaching by example is golden, of course, so don’t be afraid to express how grateful you are for the warmth of the sunshine on your face, or the rain for the very life it gives us — heck, if you can’t be a little corny with your 3-year-old, then when?