Gratitude Attitiude


In studies of successful people, gratitude is frequently a characteristic that comes up.  Gratitude is an emotion of expressing appreciation for what you have, rather than what you don’t have. 

Psychology Today reports that gratitude can be cultivated and it can increase levels of happiness when you do.  Energy, optimism, and empathy are by-products of gratitude. 

Here are some tips for nurturing the “gratitude attitude” in your students.

Model Gratitude
Make it a habit to include things you appreciate into daily conversations.

Gratitude Journal
Make a special journal for each child.  Several times a week ask them to draw, list, or write sentences about things they are grateful for.

Gratitude Box
Cut a hole in the top of a shoebox and decorate.  Place the box on a shelf along with paper and pencils.  Children write things they are thankful for and place them in the box.  When you have a few extra minutes, select notes and read them to the class.

Tell Me Something GOOD
Start the day by going around the room and asking each child to say something they are grateful for or are looking forward to doing that day.

End with Something GOOD
Clap and slap thighs as you say this chant to end your day:
            Hey, hey, what do you say?
            What happened good at school today?
Children take turns telling positive things that happened or something they did that made them feel proud.

Hot Potato Pass
You can use a sponge ball or other small object for this game.  Children sit or stand in a circle and begin passing the hot potato around.  When the music stops or when the teacher blows a whistle the child holding the potato must say one thing they are grateful for.

Find a project in your community that your class can do to help others.  It’s amazing that doing something positive for someone else always comes back to you!

Half Full or Half Empty?
When children are grateful for WHO they are and WHERE  they are, they will reflect that feeling to others. 

So, is the glass half full or half empty?  It’s up to you to model and help children see that it’s always overflowing!


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