Teaching the Habit of Thankfulness to Children – Thank you Cards
As I have shared in the past one of the habits we hope the boys make a life long habit is expressing gratitude to people. Birthdays and Christmas have proven to be excellent opportunities to teach the boys the importance of writing thank you cards as they have physical items they are able to express thanks for.
The struggle, however, comes in making it an enjoyable activity for them. At some point in their life whether they like it or not they’ll have to suck it up and write thank you cards simply because it is the proper thing to do but for now I am working hard to make writing thank you cards an attractive, meaningful and even fun activity.
Last year I shared the thank you cards we sent out after his birthday – taking 8 days to do 12 thank you cards. It worked very well and we did something similar for Wesley’s birthday.
We haven’t completed all of our Christmas thank you cards yet for this year, but we did manage to finish all our thank you cards for our local friends! We took the marshmallow friends and the boys picked out a few to go to each family they were writing thank you cards to. Then I wrote “You are so sweet” across the top on card stock and on the back side I wrote out the thank you the boys dictated to me.
It was WAY more fun than simply writing it out on a card and certainly captures their imagination and makes the process much more enjoyable for them.
It is my hope that this grows into a natural habit for them – that through disciplining themselves and taking joy and ownership in their childish expressions of thankfulness they will simply grow into the habit of writing thank you cards. Because really, I hope when they are 25 year old men they aren’t sending out bags of marshmallows with creepy faces on them!