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The new year is a great time to work on the idea of gratitude, with your students. Below are some fun tips that you may want to try out to help children gain a greater sense of what gratitude is, how can we feel it and show it.



Tip 1: Have students share something that they are grateful for during morning meeting or closing circle. Challenge students by giving them some guidelines such as; people, places, household items, etc. 


Tip 2: Have a gratitude jar. Have a spot for a jar, special paper and pen/pencil and have students write short notes throughout the day/week about things they are grateful for. At the end of the week, read them before going home.


Tip 3: Make a gratitude paper chain. Have students write something they are grateful for on a paper chain piece. Add each one together to make and continue building a paper chain to hang around the room. How far will it go?


Tip 4: Pick someone in your school to appreciate. Have students write notes about all of the reasons they appreciate this person. Put the notes in a card, or make a collage. Invite the person to your classroom and surprise them with a gift of gratitude!


Tip 5: Read books about gratitude, here are a few: “I’m Thankful Each Day” By P.K. Hallinan, “The Blankful Heart” By Mr. Meus, “An Awesome Book Of Thanks” By Dallas Clayton, “Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?” By Dr. Seuss, “Thanks A Million” By Nikki Grimes


Want to help your students see how they can be grateful for more than just things, such as electronics and toys?


Play the “What Would You Feel Without It” game. 


  • On separate slips of paper, write down as many interesting items or people as you can think of, that you would like your students to be grateful for. 
  • Put the slips of paper in a jar or box and have students reach in and pick one to read out loud.
  • Ask the student, “what would you feel without this item or person in your life?”
  • Discuss with your students.

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Another Fun Activity To Teach Gratitude: The Gratitude Tree



The beauty of this activity is that you can do it related to Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chanukah, New Year’s, or anytime, not related to any holiday at all!


Anytime you would like to encourage your students to think about gratitude, you can pull out this fun activity. 


Fill out the form below to join us in The Teacher’s Lounge free club and download your activity. As a member of The Teacher’s Lounge, you receive Freebies like this one each week, to build your teacher’s toolbox for social skills instruction made easy!



Thanks So Much and Happy Teaching!

Cindy ~Socially Skilled Kids


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