It is that time of the year again and there is a lot of planning going on for Christmas. Modern Christmas celebrations are usually about merriment, presents, parties and travel. Have you ever wondered how Children can show love at Christmas?
While the focus of Christmas might seem overly commercial and all about presents and material goods; with some thought you can focus on love and giving during the Christmas period. Most children usually have their list for Santa ready and are expecting gifts from parents, aunties and uncles.
Here, with our list of 12 ways for children to show love this Christmas you can be intentional and help your children think about others this season.
Volunteer at an orphanage by sharing food or just spending time.
Children in the orphanage do not have parents to dote over them and Christmas could be a good time to show them some love. Find a local orphanage, plan with them in advance and take your children over to volunteer. They could share food, gifts or just spend time with them. It teaches children empathy and helps them appreciate what they do have.
2. Show appreciation for teachers
It has been a long term in school, encourage your children to show appreciation for their teachers. The focus does not have to be on spending money, rather your children could make Christmas cards or home made gifts to give to their teachers. A thoughtfully made card or ornament could melt a teachers’ heart.
3. Encourage your children to give mum and dad a thoughtful gift.
Yes your children would have their list ready for Santa, what about their mum and dad? Encourage your children to get something for their parents as well. This teaches them to care about other people and there is no one better place to start than with their parents. If your children are young you could take them to the store and let them pick something out. It is not so much about the gift itself but to sow the seeds of giving to others.
4. Sing carols together and attend concerts.
This is the season for all those lovely Christmas carols that remind us about the birth of Christ. Put on your favorite CD, or go to a playlist on Youtube and sing carols. During this time various Churches and other organisations host Christmas concerts, attend a few of these as a family. [Read: Family Friendly Things To Do]
5. Pray for one another and share things to be grateful for
It has been a long year, take sometime to share the things you are grateful for individually and as a family. Spend time praying together as a family for your goals, end of the year plans and the next year ahead.
6. Give to the less privileged. Let the children pick some of their toys and gift it.
There will always be someone who is less privileged than you, it is better to give than to receive. Teach your children this early and it will grow with them, let them pick a toy, wrap it and gift it to someone who is less privileged than they are.
7. Talk about the birth of Christ and what it means for believers.
In all the merriment do not forget or lose sight of the reason for the season. Teach them about the birth of Christ and what it means for believers. Bring the story and what the birth of Christ means for us all! Talk about Mary and her obedience, the manger and Christ’s childhood as he grew up in wisdom, stature and favour before God and man. Be a good storyteller and the children will enjoy the stories!
8. Give up devices for one day and spend quality time together.
This might be tough in this digital world we live in but imagine how you would feel if you could achieve this as a family? Drop your various devices for a day and spend quality uninterrupted time together. You will certainly bond and perhaps repeat it sooner than you thought. Seriously though, do let us know if you are able to do this whether for 24 hours or for 6 hours.
9. If they have siblings let them do something special for each other.
We know siblings squabble and might not necessarily show themselves love in the way you desire. Encourage them to be selfless and do something for their sibling(s). It teaches them to be empathetic and to do something nice for someone else. It could be as simple as letting their sibling choose what to watch on TV for a day. Now you know this could be huge!
10. Let your children use their gifts and talents for others. If your child can sing or play an instrument let them entertain family and friends.
Are your children talented in something special? Perhaps he or she can sing, paint, or play the instrument. Encourage them to turn their talent into a gift to bless someone. This could be in the form of a family concert whereby you invite family and friends over for an evening of entertainment. Another idea is for your child to use their talent to raise money for the less privileged. When it comes to children it is all about teaching them to be intentional in caring for others.
11. Let them decorate the house.
You could let them decorate the house with lights and decorations rather than do it for them. However, depending on their age, you might just want to watch your walls and make sure they don’t decorate it with crayons.
12. Encourage them to make a call to say hello to relatives or friends.
We are all getting more socially akward and DM’s, text messages and WhatsApp messages have replaced a good old phone call or visit to loved ones. So whether it is a friend, grandparents, aunties or uncles in a different part of the world, pick up the phone and make a call or video call. Of course if they are near you make sure you visit and leave the devices alone!