Is teaching our children to say “thank you” gone? Do you have your children say thank you?
Here are a couple of interesting facts to start this discussion…
- Writing and delivering a thank you note can make you happier.
- For teens, gratitude could mean better behavior in school and higher levels of happiness and hopefulness, according to one study.
I’m not sure if I’m old fashioned but I do think saying thank you is important, it’s a sign of gratitude and appreciation. You are thanking someone for their generosity and by expressing this thankfulness you in turn will live a healthier and happier life.
The one thing I am finding is that I am constantly reminding my children to say thank you. I would have thought by now that it would be a habit for my 8 year old. I am constantly saying it and setting an example (or so I think) when we are out in public and even at home. Well, it’s not a habit….yet. I’m not sure why but my hunch is that she doesn’t hear if very often in the world besides from me and her father.
So I’m going to do a short rant now. Since my daughter has started to go to birthday parties she has only received 3 thank you cards. 3! This blows my mind! (They aren’t giving verbal thank you either because they don’t even open the presents while the kids are there!) About a week after she attends a party I ask her if she got a thank you card because usually any paper ends up in the bottom of her back pack and never sees the day of light. Her response is always no (except for those three times). This makes my mad, here’s why…
- I spent time going to the store looking for a gift
- I spent money that I don’t have extra of to buy a gift
- I spent time wrapping the gift
- I spent time driving my child to the party and sometimes stuck around for hours (do you know what I could have been doing during those hours?)
- I feel that we aren’t appreciated as a friend and for giving a gift
What will your child learn from writing these notes
My daughter has been writing thank you notes since she started having birthday parties. She doesn’t like it (because it takes too long and she would rather be doing something else) but I feel it is important and a life lesson. Here are somethings they will learn:
- They will learn to appreciate people
- They will learn manners
- They will be setting an example for others
To make it easier to give thank you notes I have created six different ones. You can print them on card stock, cut them out and then write your note on the back. Your child can then easily hand them out and no envelope is needed.
Why Say Thank You? Thank you is a powerful phrase that can transform a persons day. If you hold a door for someone and they don’t say thank you, how does that make you feel? Does it upset you?
“A moment of gratitude makes a difference in your attitude.” -Bruce Wilkinson
The Impact of Thank You
Here is what the phrase can do for you:
- Saying thank you makes others see you as a warm person and in a better light. People are more interested in building a relationship with you.
- It makes you happier. Showing gratitude gives you a positive attitude.
- It shows you care
- Gratitude leads to better self-esteem. It’s easier for thankful people to appreciate the accomplishments of others.
- McCullough and colleagues (2002 found:
“Compared with their less grateful counterparts, grateful people are higher in positive emotions and life satisfaction and also lower in negative emotions such as depression, anxiety, and envy. They also appear to be more prosocially oriented in that they are more empathic, forgiving, helpful, and supportive than are their less grateful counterparts.”
You may also like: One Daily Activity to Teach Your Child to be Thankful
Printable Thank You Notes
These will print on 8 1/2 x 11 paper and 4 on a page. Print on card stock and write your thank you on the back.
What do you think? Do you agree with me or do you think I’m totally off the mark? Tell me in the comments. This is a great topic to have some discussion on.