Teaching your Children to Help Others

Teaching your Children to Help Others

In the midst of this Christmas season, when most people think about buying gifts to lay under the tree, I thought it would be a perfect time to talk about ways to teach our children to help others in need. Isn’t this something we are all still learning day to day???

Who to help? When to help? Should I help? What if I don’t feel like it?

These are all questions many of us ask ourselves even as adults, so finding answers is key so that we can teach our children to help others. Especially when we’re able to help those in need and to understand why we should. I’ve been taking some time to wrestle these questions and I would encourage you do the same. I’ve come up with some simple steps to help guide us parents to teach our children to help others. 

Simple Steps to Teaching your Children to Help Others: 

  1. Talk to your children about why your family should help others (come up with your own ideas, relate to how Jesus always helped others, refer to these verses
  2. Search charities and organizations and make a decision about volunteering
  3. Volunteer (click here to get a list of ideas) with your child/ren
  4. Try out a couple different options and find one that most interests your child and keep volunteering
  5. Teach about donating, whether it’s toys they no longer play with, clothes, a percentage of their chore money, earning money for charities or other. This emphasizes giving to others.
  6. Practice what you preach. We can’t just expect our children to want to help others if we aren’t, so make time in your schedule to help others. When you do, tell your kids about it, how it made you feel and again, discuss why.  
“Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.” 1 John 3:18

Here are some ideas: 

Operation Shoe Box

Operation shoe box delivers boxes with toys to children in need around the globe, but the box is just the first step in transforming their life, because the get to learn about Jesus.  This just finished up but make sure to do this next year! 

Operation Shoe Boxes

Here are my older 2 helping getting boxes ready couple years ago, they colored the first page and wrote a sweet note. 

Holiday Meals

Bring some food, either prepared or just all the ingredients to someone in need. If you do not personally know of anyone who is truly in need try your church or other local churches in your area. They most likely have a collection going on or a family you could bring a meal to, 

Sing Christmas Carols at a Nursing Home

With your family, or a group of friends set up a time a local nursing home… they will NOT turn you down when you make the call. This is a wonderful way to teach kids about serving the elderly. And most of the elderly in nursing homes or assisted living do not have family around. 

Chatting with the Elderly

We just had the wonderful opportunity to do this. The kids absolutey loved it and so did all of the older folks. 🙂 

Military Care Boxes

Show gratitude for the men and women serving with a care box with some simple things they use everyday. Some ideas are: soap, lotion, coffee, homemade cookies, peanut butter, etc. Have your children write out a card, pack the box and mail it out. 

Donate used coats, toys, etc.

Find a local charity or organization in need and donate! 

Support a Child

You can do this by choosing an Angel Tree at the mall or at a Walmart, or even some other organizations and get a child a gift. Another way to do this is to financially support a child, and interact with them via writing letters though Food for the Hungry or Compassion International

lotion bars kids made

We recently signed up to help Khobucha a child with Food for the Hungry. My kids earned money by making and selling lotion bars to support him this month and we all look forward to connecting with him. Not only does this help (my) kids learn about earning money to help others, we get to write him, which is great for how we “do school

“In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
Help your neighbors, family or friends in need

At different points in all of our lives we’ve been in need, whether it was financially, emotionally, or even plain ole tired. I have been on the receiving end of someone helping me several times, most recently was when our baby was born, wonderful friends brought us meals- a really wonderful gift. 

There are countless ways to help people close to you. Rake some leaves, go help clean some bathrooms. Babysit some kids so a couple can go on a date. Go help build a house with Habitat for Humanity with your kids. 

There are Tons and tons of other ideas! 

What are your ideas for teaching children to help others?

About Rachel

Rachel is a mother to four children and a wife to a wellness doctor. Her passions are faith, family, and health. You can find her writing about her family adventures and inspiring you to make healthier choices for your family.

Comments

  1. Sarah Coenen says:

    Great ideas!!! Living on base and having a chaplain as a dad my kids are given TONS of opportunities to serve (sometimes even joyfully! ;o) ) but I can tell you what has gotten the biggest response; staying to clean up after an event. Any event. People are THRILLED to bring food, gifts and participation to community happenings but the clean up afterwards is rarely stuck around for. When we have meals at the chapel my boys know that they are staying for an extra half hour to wipe down tables, fold up chairs and wrap food. Not only do extra hands make for faster work but when the clean up isn’t such a chore people are more likely to plan events to honor, help and bless those in our communities. Working in a soup kitchen is GREAT; offering to help clean the pots when everyone leaves is fabulous as well!

  2. Christine W says:

    Every year we shop for toys together and donate them to Toys for Tots….a great organization!

  3. Missy Campbell says:

    We adopted a family with four children and sending a package to a soldier in Jordan

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