Gratitude can change a person’s overall perspective for life. Researchers say that being grateful for everything in life makes the person happy and positive. It helps aim them higher and achieve greater things in life. Thus, teaching our students and children the value of being grateful is the ultimate goal. Children and youngsters are the pillar of our society. The way we mound their personality is very essential. We constantly complaint that the future generation is becoming more and more selfish and narcissist. Well the change starts from you. Your role as a teacher can help change all that.
We will be discussing some classroom activities that you can carry out to teach your students gratitude and help them evolve as a community.
1. Gratitude journal: Ask your students to maintain a gratitude journal. You can introduce this activity as a daily exercise or you can spend some quality time on it weekly. This well help them write down all the things they are grateful for and realize the worth of life. Being grateful will help shape them into better human beings. You can make it harder by asking them why they are grateful for all the things they have. This will lead them to go into a deeper meaning of everything, making them more involved in the activity.
2. Gratitude artwork: Many children love to create and paint. Art is a great form to open up and expand your imagination. Ask your students to make or create an artwork that represents their gratefulness towards life. This is a fun activity that every student would love doing. The outcome is great too as they will learn better when they are having fun. You can give them ideas like making a gratitude tree or tracing their hands on the paper and writing on each finger for what they are grateful for. There are endless possibilities to make it work if you think about it.
3. Make a gratitude group: Working as a group will help students realize the important of a community. They will work better and have more fun doing it. This will also boost their confidence level. Make a group of students and ask them to sit in a circle. Then, ask them to share what they are grateful for on a personal level or in general. Ask them to ask each other question as this will help them to get to know each other better. Rotate the groups every week or every 15 minutes. This activity will make the environment of the classroom friendlier and healthier. Students will get to connect with each other personally, which will make their bonds stronger. This won’t even feel like an activity as they are sitting with a group of friends and discussing gratitude on a light note. There is no spot light thus students who are shy won’t feel uncomfortable.
4. Gratitude party: Give back to your students and make them feel like what they worked the whole year for is worth it. Throw a gratitude party in which you can ask them to invite anyone they feel they are grateful in their life. It can be their parents, friends, siblings, workers at school and teachers. This will help them realize the love they have for that person or even a thing is bigger than everything else. You can make them prepare a short speech on gratitude and then pick a winner. It can be a one dish party where you can make it more fun by telling them to make dishes that they are their favorite.
5. Board of thanks: You can make a bulletin board where students can hang or stick thankyou notes for anything that has happened to them throughout the day or the week. This will bring a positive change in the students and encourage them to appreciate the smallest things. You can teach them that they don’t have to wait for the big moments to be grateful for, rather if they look around they can find the smallest of the reason to be thankful for.
6. Read a gratitude book: There are a lot of books on gratitude available. You can read them the gratitude book which will encourage gratefulness in your students. This will help them relate to a lot of things in the book and think of a bigger picture. Many comes with coloring and drawing activities in the end which will give an added benefit to help in your student’s creativity.