Thanksgiving has come and gone…on the calendar that is. But why can’t we put the simple principles of this holiday into practice on a daily basis? Why can’t we prioritize instilling a grateful heart in our children, students, even ourselves?!
I have started a “Gratitude Journal” with each of my children. This is a place they can jot down what they are thankful for. It could be something as big as “freedom to worship God” or something as small as “a soccer ball to play with.” It doesn’t matter how big or small…the point is to recognize how fortunate we are and learn to be more grateful on a regular basis.
I am also going to try this with my students. I teach in a Title I school where my school kiddos probably have different ideas of what they are thankful for (more needs than wants) than my personal kiddos, but at the end of the day, if we can learn as a society to be grateful and thankful for what we have, I believe our outlooks on life and how we treat/view others will change dramatically.
You can use a store-bought journal or personalize a notebook (cover the notebook with blank paper and have your kiddo decorate with crayons, markers, and stickers) for your Gratitude Journal. Personally, I like to have my kiddos personalize theirs so they take more ownership. You can set a regular time for journal writing (before bed) or simply have your kiddos write when they feel the desire to. Either way is fine, as long as they are getting used to writing on a regular basis.
I feel it is more vital than ever to recognize our blessings and how fortunate we are. Life is not perfect…it is not supposed to be. But if we can learn to focus on the positives, the world may indeed be a much happier place.
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