Children only learn what they experience and learning gratitude is important. We value this at our center and know our parents do as well. Learning gratitude at an early age will carry out to be a caring adult. Gratitude is simply empathy, which is becoming sensitive to the feelings of others. This is something that allows children and adults to develop healthy relationships. We do this through a variety of methods:
- Manners: Learning to be kind and generous with toys at an early age. Learning to say “thank you” to adults and children is important as they learn to care and be kind to people of all ages.
- Thankful: Teaching children to say what makes them thankful is wonderful. We as adults need to practice it as well, so they hear it.
- Giving: Learning how to give is not something that comes easy. Teaching that giving warms the heart is important. We talk about giving and sharing a toy is a good thing. We have done different giving drives in the past and many of our families along with the staff volunteer in Defiance to give back to the community.
Instilling gratitude will lead to happiness as you become an adult. A 2008 study published in the Journal of School Psychology noted that children between the ages of 11 to 13 that were grateful were also happier and more optimistic. We hear all the time from our parents how prepared their children were for kindergarten. We know that if they learn the social skill of gratitude at our childcare center that they will adjust easily in kindergarten. Our center (daycare) is not about just making sure they are academically ready but have the social skills to adjust to school. Being a student that has manners, is thankful and giving will lead to a student who will learn to get along with others and respect those around them, will be successful in and out of school.