This is the season of giving. We have Thanksgiving around the corner, and soon Christmas will follow. This is a great time to teach the gift of giving.
We, as parents, should demonstrate a giving spirit. Something our children want to copy and traditions they will cherish with their own family at some point in time.
This begins in the season for giving and can last all year long. One way to teach about giving is using the concept of benevolence.
What is a benevolent person?
You may think a benevolent person is someone who gives, right? Well, it is more than that. The saying goes, “It is better to give than to receive.” Many times children have not yet embraced this concept.
Benevolence can come from a person or a family. It is the ability to see that someone is in need and to fill that need. Taking care of someone who needs extra help or providing for their needs, even spending time with them, is a form of benevolence.
Treating others as we wish to be treated is known as the Golden Rule, and it is another way to show benevolence.
A benefactor is someone we consider benevolent, so how do we encourage this character quality in our children? One way is through teaching the opposite.
Benevolence is the opposite of the word selfish. No one wants to be selfish, right? Even children who do not like to give agree that being selfish is not good when they understand what it means.
Explain to the children that being selfish is thinking about me and only me. With selfies and me-me-me on social media, our culture works against what parents are trying to teach. Many parents limit social media time, which is a great benefit to the child in the long run.
How can we teach benevolence and the gift of giving?
It always feels good to give to others, especially those in need. Thanksgiving and Christmas are great times where we can think about giving to others. Check out these examples:
- Many children visit nursing homes or sing at outdoor concerts and perform in their community,
- There are meals to help make or donations and presents to buy for those less fortunate.
- If we can bottle up these feelings of giving and thoughts focused on others, we can teach our children that benevolence should happen all year long.
- This can be demonstrated within the family. It is a way to help your child have a fulfilling life and demonstrate to our children some of these character traits.
- It is not easy for all children to give or be generous. Yet, we can lead by example and give our children ways to practice this.
- I created a Benevolence Character Study Planner with activities that allow the children to demonstrate the skills and will enable them to practice.
When talking to children about giving, you will often find that some of their solutions surprise you!
True giving is giving not from the extras we have but from the love in your heart. It is giving of ourselves, and that makes us vulnerable, humble, and selfless. These are all excellent qualities to have and to practice.
The gift of giving from our hearts demonstrates our faith in the Almighty. It is a way we can give back or give forward. I hope you enjoyed the past planners, and if you have missed any of them, they are available for sale on the MediaAngels website.
If you want to get yours free each month, you can subscribe at our website.
I pray for you and your family to find beneficial ways to help your children experience joy and realize that it is better to give than receive.
Felice Gerwitz is a wife, mother of five graduated homeschoolers, and grandma to eight. She began Media Angels® Publishing while pregnant with her third child and went on to write and produce many books and online conferences. Felice is the founder of the Ultimate Homeschool Podcast Network and the Ultimate Christian Podcast Network. Felice invites you to join her on her show Vintage Homeschool Moms, celebrating over 400 episodes!
Sarah is a wife, daughter of the King and Mama to 4 children (one who is a homeschool graduate)! She is a an eclectic, Charlotte Mason style homeschooler that has been homeschooling for over 16 years now. She is still trying to find the balance between work and keeping a home and says she can only do it by the Grace of God, and Coffee!