• leahwacek

How to Inspire Elementary-Aged Kids to Generosity

The biggest idea we've tried to instill in our kids during the elementary years is this:

We've never made it just something Mom and Dad did by sending a payment somewhere. We've always expected them to be involved. We give as a family, often with acts of service. We teach them that even with only a few dollars to their names, they have time and talents that are valuable and that those are also resources that should be shared with a generous heart.

During the elementary years, we do a lot of talking with our kids about how it is good to give from our abundance, but it is also wise to sacrifice when we are in need. We model that when we need something, we figure out a way to give in that area. It is so cool for the kids to see the boomerang effect of generosity and get curious about getting involved.

Here are some ideas for getting your elementary-aged kids involved in generous living.

Ask questions:

  • Tell me about one thoughtful action you did today.

  • Tell me about the most beautiful thing you saw today.

  • Who are some characters from the Bible that show generosity?

  • Has anyone ever shown you generosity? How did that make you feel?

  • Tell me something that makes your teacher happy.

  • Tell me something that makes your sibling happy.

  • Do people think of you as a "giver" or a "taker"?

  • How do your family and friends show they care for you?

  • What is something you can do to help around the house?

  • Who is the most helpful person you know?

  • What does it mean to be a friend?

  • Who do you know that needs help?

Their answers spark opportunities to brainstorm how we can increase our generosity towards our community and the world.

Read books:

  • Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts

  • Stone Soup by Jon J. Muth

  • Shoebox Sam by Mary Brigid Barrett

  • The Red Bicycle by Jude Isabella

  • Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett

  • The Quilt Maker's Gift by Jeff Brumbeau

Volunteer often and take the kids along, when possible. If they can't join, find a way to get them involved in any prep work at home.

  • Brainstorming ways to help

  • Packing food

  • Grocery shopping

  • Meal prep

  • Reading stories/playing games with other kids

  • Cleaning

I used to think that kids would only get in the way and that's true in some situations, but more often than not, we can get creative about how to involve them and when we're consistent, they learn quickly. When we make them do hard things, we find out that they're capable.

Kids are brave and witty and strong and creative. Give them an opportunity to impress you! I have a feeling they won't let you down.

HUGS, Leah ;)

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