Are you one of the many grandparents who hopes their grandchildren will grow up with a generous spirit? One way we can foster that is by creating rituals of giving. Here are three ideas from grandparents (including me!):
THE POWER OF LOOSE CHANGE
I’ve shared this story in the past, but here it is again: When our children were small, we saved our spare change all year long in a special jar. Every December, we’d count and roll the coins, then take the kids to the toy store. There, they’d each get to figure out what to buy with their share of the money we’d collected. The final step was putting those toys in the box for Toys for Tots. It was such a tangible way to show them how pennies and dimes could add up, and to let them in on the excitement of giving to a good cause. Now we look forward to doing the same with our grandchildren.
GIVE THEM A VOICE
From the time they were too young to read, we read to the four grands on holidays about causes that needed help. They had to decide which one they wanted to share any money they were gifted. As they got older, we gave them printouts telling them about certain charities and sent them into a room together to vote on which one to support that year. They learned about what percentage of their good “fortune” to share and to evaluate the different causes. Now grown, when told that part of their “gift” went to a certain charity, we get rave responses. Teaching caring needs to start early. “Storylady”
ONE FOR ME, ONE FOR YOU
Every once in a while, we take our granddaughter to choose a new book or toy. We always let her choose two: one to keep, and one to add to the giving box. When the holidays roll around, we take her along when we deliver the giving box to a local gift drive. This way, we aren’t just thinking about giving at the holidays, but all year long. “Grandpa Gene”
How do you teach your grandchildren about sharing and giving? Please share in the comments!
If you are interested, a piggy bank like the one in the photo is available here.
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