31 Days of Moxie Wonderland: Day 21-25
December 21: Gratitude Around Gifts
Have you ever cringed when your child opens a gift from another person and exclaims that they don’t like it? Or are you worried about your children being more interested in receiving presents over giving them? Here are some tips to help instill more gratitude around gift giving and receiving this holiday season:
- Talk to your child about how to respond appropriately to receiving gifts from others, even if it’s something they don’t want. Remind them that the person giving the gift is expressing love and kindness. Help them find something to be grateful for about each gift they receive to help with any disappointment. Practice how to open gifts slowly, and spend time appreciating each one, in addition to practicing how to say “thank you” after opening a gift.
- Use the holidays to open up discussions about how others may be less fortunate, and the importance of giving back to others. See our instagram posts on gratitude and ways to volunteer in your community. If your child has toys that they don’t use anymore but are in good condition, or receive a gift that they don’t want or need, consider making donations to toy drives or homeless shelters.
- Discuss how good it feels to give gifts to other people, and involve your child in picking out presents for friends and family members. When they understand how others feel when giving a gift, it can help keep their emotions in perspective if they receive something they don’t like.
- Practice mindful gift giving this holiday season. Be intentional about the gifts you are giving to others and have your child help you choose gifts with personal meaning. Talk about why you are choosing a specific gift for each person. Consider having your child help make homemade gifts for family members if you are on a budget.
- Some questions to spark conversations around gift-giving:
- What is nice about gift giving? What is hard about it?
- Should gift-giving always be reciprocal? Would you like to give a gift to someone even if you get nothing in return?
- What is the best gift you ever gave someone?
- What is your favorite gift you have received? Why is it special?
- How would you feel if someone told you they didn’t like a gift that you gave them?
- How should you react if someone gives you a gift you don’t like?
December 22: Winter Break Learning Activities
Here are some ideas for science and STEM activities to keep your kids engaged and learning over winter break:
- For kids interested in STEM check out this site for a list of fun engineering activities and projects: https://teachkidsengineering.com
- A fun science project you can do if you live in a cold climate (or you can use your freezer!): https://www.steampoweredfamily.com/engineering-ice-lantern-stem-activity/
- Build you own igloo using marshmallows and toothpicks: https://lemonlimeadventures.com/engineering-for-kids-building-igloos-with-marshmallows/
- Learn about the science behind snowflakes (and create a fun ornament if you have a christmas tree): https://lemonlimeadventures.com/engineering-for-kids-building-igloos-with-marshmallows/
December 23: Kid Friendly Recipes
Cooking and baking together with your kids is a great way to bond and create memories, teach science and math skills such as measurement, and help build their independence! Try out one of these cute reindeer-themed recipes over the holidays:
Healthy No-Bake Reindeer Bites: https://weelicious.com/no-bake-reindeer-bites/
Reindeer Sandwiches: https://weelicious.com/reindeer-sandwiches-recipe/
December 24: Rudolph and Importance of Differences
Most people know the story of Rudolph, the reindeer with the red nose who helped save Christmas. This holiday season, read your child the story of Rudolph, or watch one of the kid-friendly movies together! Use these questions to spark conversations about the meaning of the story:
- How do you think it made Rudolph feel when the other reindeer made fun of him, or didn’t include him in their games?
- What was it about Rudolph that helped him be able to save Christmas?
- Why do you think it’s important that people (or animals) are different from each other?
- What do you think the reindeer who made fun of Rudolph learned at the end?
- Do you think Rudolph should have still helped the other reindeer? Why or why not?
- What is something special that you like about yourself?
- As an additional activity, you can make a list together of all the ways you are special!
December 25: Fun Facts About Christmas
Here are some fun facts that you can share with your child about Christmas, from National Geographic Kids! Check out the full list of facts here: https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/discover/history/general-history/facts-about-christmas/
- Not everyone celebrates Christmas on the same day! In countries like Russia, Ukraine, and Romania, Christmas falls on January 7.
- Many of the Christmas traditions we have today came from the Victorian era, like giving Christmas cards and gifts! Back then, they ate traditional foods such as mince pie and roast turkey.
- Christmas trees were first seen in 16th century Germany, where people decorated fir trees with fruits and nuts.
- There are many different characters who visit the homes of children on Christmas night around the world! In Iceland, children leave their shoes under the window for mischievous trolls called Yule Lads. If the child has been good, they’ll find candy in their shoes. If they’ve been naughty, they might find a rotten potato!