Teaching Children the Joy of Giving
December 8, 2009
When times seem tougher than ever on our wallets, skip the long lines at the register and use this time of economic difficulty to step out of the ordinary “hustle and bustle” of the holidays. Let us focus on what is really important this time of year: giving to those in need. As an educator, it is my job to not only provide my students with the necessary academic skills to succeed, but also to present and model the necessary social skills that will allow them to create long-lasting relationships and to become upstanding citizens in the community. Normally, around this time of year I would just model or talk about the importance of caring and compassion, but this year, LeapFrog has given my classroom of students the opportunity to go beyond a discussion of compassion. With their generous donation of educational toys, we are to designate someone we feel is in need of some holiday cheer.
I know teaching a kindergartner to give is no easy task, especially when they are still learning how to share themselves or continuing to grasp the concept of Needs vs. Wants. Whatever the case may be, my students show me daily that they will be capable of feeling the reward of giving by the way that they care for their peers everyday. When a friend is sad they give a comforting hug, a pat on the back, or words of encouragement. They have seen this behavior modeled by their parents and teachers, and now, with the help of LeapFrog, my students will have the opportunity to feel, first hand, that it truly is better to give than receive. I am thrilled to be able to have this opportunity to watch my students get the "warm and fuzzies" when they give LeapFrog's donation.
I encourage you to help your child choose a place to donate this holiday season. Even if it is just one toy, every little bit helps and the lesson of giving is just as effective. You may also choose to donate your time and volunteer as a family.
Let’s give our children the opportunity, with our support and guidance, to step out and extend ourselves to others. We can all help turn this holiday season around while reaping the joy we will be teaching our children to become compassionate people.
With some help from me, my students have narrowed their donation options down to two choices: Angel Tree or the children at MD Anderson Cancer Treatment Hospital. Angel Tree is a program of Prison Fellowship that provides prisoners' children with Christmas gifts on behalf of their parent in prison. Children at MD Anderson are fighting everyday to stay strong and focused while receiving their treatments. These families have stretched their finances to the limits in getting their children the best medical care possible. More than anything these parents want to give their children the best Christmas possible, and both are worthy candidates of such an awesome gift from LeapFrog.
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