So, how can you help your little ones develop a heart for others?
BE A GOOD ROLE MODEL. Do you notice that your child sees and imitates everything that you do? That’s only because much of a child’s learning is acquired through observation and imitation. Whenever you make an effort to help and bless someone in need, your child will learn to imitate the same behavior as well. Do you sometimes make the effort to smile at the people around you, even strangers? Remember that your child sees every little act.
SMALL AND SIMPLE OPPORTUNITIES. Providing small and simple opportunities for your child to give and bless others in their immediate environment is definitely a good way to start. Be deliberate. It can be a simple act of blessing your neighbour with a plate of freshly baked cookies, or giving up your seat to the elderly on the bus. Seize the teachable moments, and always talk and share about why giving is important.
LOTS OF PRACTICE. As children learn through repetition as well, being intentional in providing lots of opportunities for practice is essential. Whenever you are on the move with your child, look out for opportunities to give. It is through repetition that knowledge becomes an ability.
Remember that learning is always a process, and so is understanding the concept of giving. So, enjoy the process. :) At the end of the day, not only are you inculcating the value of giving in your child, the world will be a better place to live in.
Recommended book: THE GIVING TREE by Shel Silverstein
image source: Emma Wood