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The Holidays are almost in full swing. You must already be busy planning gatherings with friends and family, buying gifts or planning trips. While this is such a fun time do remember to find ways to introduce activities that can teach the children about making it meaningful.
Gifts are certainly the high point of the holidays but if you take a moment to incorporate certain purposeful traditions the holidays can mean more than just festivities. Rest assured that these traditions are what your kids will remember more than any toy they received during the holidays.
Here are 5 ways to make the holidays more meaningful with kids.
Participate in community service
Find a day during the holidays when you as a family can participate in community service. Do some research on the web and find a list of options and then as a family decide the one you want to participate in. Have your kids weigh in and ask why they chose a certain activity over another.
There are tons of ways that you can share the holiday cheer, like supplying first responders with backpacks of books to give to children at the scene of the accident, supplying winter hats and warm clothes at the homeless shelter.
Organize a food drive
There are multiple organizations that support families in need and these organizations need a constant supply of food. You can work with your kids to organize a holiday food drive. Involve them in the process so it’s a meaningful experience for them.
Have your kids make a list of food items that can be donated and then ask them to distribute it in your community. Your kids could also reach out to their friends via text or online platforms asking for donations. One of the most inspiring things I see is when young kids reach out asking for donations to give.
Holiday celebrations around the world
Holidays are a time to share stories. While you are indulging in story-telling whether it is from your own family or from books from the library, make sure you talk about holiday celebrations around the world. Pick books that tell you stories about the holidays from different countries and cultures.
We are different, yet in so many ways we are the same. So when children get introduced to diverse cultures and traditions they grow up as empathetic human beings. They grow up to be kind and generous leaders, the type of leaders that our world deserves. As a mom myself I am always thinking of different ways to introduce diverse stories.
Think about the environment
While you are buying and wrapping gifts you can incorporate sustainable habits, like reusing and recycling wrapping paper or gift bags. While you are shopping for gifts, be thoughtful about supporting products that are sourced with the environment in mind.
You can create a family tradition of planting a tree every New Year which is a great way to conserve our planet. You can make the ‘planting a tree’ a special ceremony to make it memorable and joyful.
Celebrate the year
The time during the holidays can feel very overwhelming. Make sure you take a day or two to enjoy restful moments with your kiddos. Your kiddos need it and you most certainly do. During times when there is pressure to schedule every minute leave time that is unscheduled so your kids have room for play and discovery.
Use this quiet time to reflect on the year that went by. Encourage your kids to think about things that happened during the year that made them feel grateful or account for times when they were kind to someone or someone else was kind to them.
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