Does you child have a lot of expensive things, such as an iPad, Xbox, Nintendo DS, DSI, 2DS, or an iPhone even?
If so, did they receive these gifts as a reward? Or have you been showering these expensive gifts on them simply because they are your child? And when they received these gifts, did they express their gratitude?
Over the years I have seen children with the most expensive shoes, gadgets, and clothes. Many of these children had severe behavioral problems, like acting out in school and/or showing disrespect for their parents and teachers. I asked the parents how they received these gifts, and I found that often these gifts were given for no particular reason - not even because it was their birthday or Christmas.
I believe that children who aren't taught to express gratitude will face many difficulties later in life. Positive psychology demonstrates that the more we are grateful, the happier and more fulfilled our lives will be. Betsy Brown Braun , a child development and behavior specialist, states that not only is it mannerly to say "thank-you," but that thankfulness is connected with living a happier, more resilient, empathic and self-fulfilled life.
I had the good fortune of being born into a very giving family. Yes, things were given to me when I didn't necessarily deserve them. But fortunately my parents also taught me to be grateful for the gifts I had received.
Teaching children to be thankful can be a challenge because as they naturally develop their sense-of-self, they tend to become self-centered. But, a child that has learned to be grateful will have better social skills, empathy and self worth.
As a music therapist I have taught children to be thankful through music. I was inspired by the season of Thanksgiving to write a song entitled, "I am Thankful." This song includes two tracks, one with vocals and one without so you can sing along and insert the things for which you and your child are thankful. The song also comes with a lyrics sheet and chords so you can play along if you are musically inclined. One mother told me she played this song to her two young boys and was excited to hear them going through the house singing about the things they were thankful for!
Here is an easy way to teach your child to be grateful. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I am offering a 50% DISCOUNT on this song through the end of November. All you need to do is click on the picture to the right and type in this code when you place your order: THANKS
Get it soon as it is only available until November 30th! And share with as many people as you can!
Gratefully yours and Happy Thanksgiving!