Instilling an Attitude of Gratitude: Tips for Fostering Your Toddlers Social Skills

Parents constantly remind their children to say “please”, “thank you” and “I’m sorry”, but how do you truly instill an attitude of gratitude and teach them the true meaning of those words?

Small moments each day provide numerous opportunities to help foster socialization and compassion within your child.

Instilling an Attitude of Gratitude:  Social-Emotional Learning in Toddlers

Try these positive communication tips for teaching your toddler about……

Empathy: When one child hurts another child, bring the children together and talk about how they are feeling hurt and sad. Encourage your child to comfort a friend — to go to someone when they are upset, and offer a pat on the back or a hug.

Sharing: When a child wants a toy that another has, it’s important to teach them not to grab, but rather to ask or propose a trade. It doesn’t always work, but through this modeling we can teach awareness of feelings and kindness.

Gratitude: Share your own gratitude with your child. “I feel blessed to have this yummy dinner tonight”, “I am grateful Grandma and Grandpa can come to visit us.”

Kindness: Be a role model for a child – treating others with care and kindness. Your child is watching, and will learn from your own actions. “Let’s wait until everyone is off the elevator before we move toward the door.”

Love & Appreciation: Reinforce daily acts of love by calling attention to them, and letting you child know how their words or actions were meaningful. “Thank you for giving mommy that hug, it really makes me feel happy.”

Sorrow: Rather than simply having the child say “I’m sorry”, try helping him understand the impact of their actions. “Do you see how sad Tommy is because you bumped into him?” “What can you do to make him feel better?” You’ll be surprised one day when you’re child says, “I’m sorry, Tommy” without being prompted.

Politeness: Show your child how to treat others by setting the example. Always speak to them politely. “Thank you for putting away your toys. It helps me keeps the house clean.”

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Have You Filled a Bucket Today? A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids
by Carol McCloud, David Messing

Doing small acts of kindness isn't only for holidays, but about being compassionate and kind EVERY day."