Gratitude has been identified one of the strengths most robustly linked to satisfaction and happiness, as well as sleep, improved grades and health.
Below is a list of 5 different activities that you can try at home to support the habit of gratitude in your child. (Taken directly from http://www.ipositive-education.net/)
1. A Gratitude Walk- Pack a bag and get out of the house and into nature! Take your family on a walk somewhere away from the stress of life. On your walk ask everyone to notice three micro-moments of gratitude. Make sure you explain that gratitude can be big (i.e. my family) or small (i.e. the way the trees are starting to grow back their leaves). As you go along, everyone can share what they are grateful for.
2. Gratitude Dinner-Before eating, ask everyone to go around and say one thing they are grateful for today. While eating, challenge everyone to think of one more small bit of gratitude they thought of while eating. At the end of dinner, ask everyone to share the new thing or person they are grateful for since dinner began.
3. Gratitude Art-Bring out the colored pencils and paper and turn on some music – it’s time for gratitude art! Rather than merely saying what you are grateful for, turn it into a way to use your creativity. Have your family think of one thing they are grateful for this week and draw a picture or symbol of that one thing. Be sure to allow for some show and tell at the end! Bonus points for hanging up the artwork as a reminder that there is so much to be grateful for.
4. Gratitude Before Bed-Research has shown that writing down what you are grateful for before bed can help you sleep better. Let’s try it out! Before you go to bed, have your family together share and write down three things they are grateful for. Keep the piece of paper by your bed and try this practice for the next week.
5. Gratitude Letters- Gratitude is best when shared. Have your family think of one friend, family member, neighbor, teacher, etc. that they are grateful for. Spend some time writing down a letter to send to that person. Make it even more fun by decorating the cards together as a family! You can expand this practice of gratitude letters by having a basket of blank cards in the kitchen labeled “for gratitude” that your family can easily pick up & fill out whenever they like. I will be running a workshop on Steps