When we become parents, we automatically begin to selflessly give of ourselves. We do not even think about it because it feels so natural. There is nothing we would not give our do for our children. Our bodies, our hearts, our time, and even our lives. We give happily and willingly.
But what of giving to others? How do we teach our children to give to others? In the aftermath of the events that took place in my city on October 1, I know one thing. There is more goodness in this world than evil. I also know that we need these good people to spread the love when times are hard or when people are faced with tremendous sorrow.
I want my daughter to continue to be a good person. My hope is that she is one of those people that spreads love and joy. Is that not what we want for all of our children? We want them to help make the world a better place. So, how do we do that? Guest contributor, Tracey Clayton, is here today to help us all get started.
The Power of Giving: Teaching and Inspiring Our Children
Guest Post By Tracey Clayton
Never is the need for kindness and bravery more obvious than when we look at our own children. What kind of world are we leaving to them? And more importantly, what kind of people are we making of them? We want them to be gentle and compassionate, but wise enough not to let other people take advantage of them.
Kids are so wonderfully curious and eager, that all it takes to make them into good human beings, is to let them see the world around them and help them understand it. Children who learn empathy early on can help change many lives, so here are a few tips on how to teach them the power of giving.
Practice What You Preach
If may not seem like it after we’ve told them to clean their room for the fifth time that day, but children look up to us more than we think. It’s not just about what we say, but what we do, how we act around them. If you tell them that they need to share their toys with other kids, but never share anything of your own, they’re not going to believe you much. The best way to teach a lesson is to be a good role model, and to show them, through your own actions, how much you can brighten someone’s day by being charitable.
Kindness is in the Small Things
It’s not about occasionally sending a check to a random charity and then feeling good about yourself. Small, everyday things can make a huge impact, and your child should know that stuff like sharing their lunch with a classmate who forgot theirs means a lot. Saying ‘thank you’ and ‘please’ to store clerks, smiling at others, leaving some extra change in the vending machine, being polite and setting time aside to listen to someone who’s sad and in need of comfort. Being a good person is not about grandiose acts – it’s about being consistently kind and charitable. Teach them that they don’t need to change the world on their own. They can change one life, and it will be enough.
Do Charity Together
Volunteering with your kid can be a great way to help them understand what charity really means. They may have a hard time understanding the concept unless they have a more hands-on approach, so take them to a soup kitchen or a nursing home, and have them help you out. Is it possible that they might be upset if they see someone who’s sick and poor? Yes, absolutely, but this is the reality of the world, and they need to understand that. Do they keep complaining about how much they hate school? Show them the children who never had the chance to go to school, and how unfortunate they are. Together, you can make a donation to help foundations that give high school scholarship for girls and enable someone who’s lost all hope to have the education they need to make their life better.
Sometimes, a bad situation can be turned into a good one. Was someone mean to your child? Try to explain to them why this happens, and why sometimes others act the way they do. They will meet a lot of bad people in their life, but they need to understand that doesn’t mean that they themselves need to become mean and rough. However! This does not mean you should condone bullying in any way, ever.
Is someone harassing your kid? Teach them to stand up for themselves, or protect them in any way you can. Bullying can have terrible consequences, and absolutely needs to be addressed. Use it as an opportunity to teach your child what they can do in these situations, and they will learn how to be brave and stand up to injustice, and retain their own good qualities.
Kids only need a little encouragement, and they can accomplish a lot. Be open, supportive, and teach them how giving their time and affection to other people can help change the world.
Love this post by Tracey? Check out her other inspirational articles below:
A Few of Tracey’s Guest Posts Here on A Mama Tale:
And Check out Her Other Amazing Articles here!
How do you teach your children to give? What are your favorite ways to give as a family? Please comment and share below!