One of the first things children learn at home, in school, and on the playground is how to share with others. As they grow, it’s important that you continue to find ways to encourage generosity in your children so they can build strong relationships with others.
Why Is Generosity Important?
Generosity may be defined as a virtue based on giving, but there is also a lot that an individual can get from giving.
Giving back to communities and sharing with the people around us without expecting anything in return tends to lift spirits and improve one’s general attitude toward life. When they share their wealth, so to speak, people are more likely to feel more fulfilled and self-assured.
How Can It Be Taught?
Being generous does not always come naturally to children. To share a fun toy or delicious snack can be a big ask of some young children. There are ways to gradually encourage generosity in your children that will prevent overwhelming them with the idea of giving things away.
In fact, you want to avoid forcing generosity onto them, as this may cause a negative association with charitable giving. As you consider the following ways to instill generosity in your kids, remember to tack positive reinforcement along with them.
Showcase Your Generosity
Children look up to their parents and guardians. You can be the best role model for your child by exemplifying the traits you wish to instill in them.
If you’re constantly verbally reminding them how important it is to give back, they should witness you doing so. This can be as simple as taking them along to drop off a meal to a sick relative or donating clothing to a shelter in need.
Talk About It
The importance of giving back may not immediately resonate with children. Talk with your kids about why you give and why you think they should, too. Express how great it feels when they share with you. Having brief chats about generosity brings attention to its vast impact.
Ask your child how they feel when you or their peers are generous versus withholding to them and discuss which scenario they prefer. Let your child know that giving back doesn’t have to be grandiose or take on the form of a steep check; it can be as minor as inviting someone to sit with them at lunch or making a thank you card for their friend or teacher.
Practice Generosity With Your Child
Find ways to give back with your child. Donating time together makes for a great bonding experience and can really drive home what generosity looks like.
Do something that strikes your child’s interest to teach them how engaging the process of giving back to communities can be. You could gather and donate wholesale bulk toys to a children’s hospital, bake treats to surprise family and friends, sort through old clothing to donate—anything that will strike the message of how charitable acts help uplift others.