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Reader Tip: 10 Ideas to Teach Children to Give


Jennifer emailed in the following tip:

As a parent, we want our kids to be kind and generous with others, but we all know this does not come naturally to most children. So, how do we teach them to give to others when they would rather focus on their own needs and wants?

Here are a few ideas… 

  1. Lead by example (obviously listed first for a reason!)
  2. Pay them for doing chores or use an allowance system and teach them how to give, save, and spend wisely (give 10% to a church or charity, save 10%, and give 10% to missions every week).
  3. Help them think about where they would like their money to go (homeless shelter, an orphanage, missionary children, etc.)
  4. Find a specific project you can all work towards as a family (make scarves or collect food and supplies for a homeless shelter).
  5. Save money for a specific need.
  6. Do yard work for a widow or elderly neighbor.
  7. Make a meal for a shut-in or someone who is ill.
  8. Buy Christmas presents for children of military personnel or people in prison.
  9. Prepare an Operation Christmas Child box.
  10. Make birthday or Christmas cards for people in a nursing home or hospital and deliver them in person.

Don’t forget to ask you family for their ideas… and write them down. You might be surprised by some of the ideas your children think of and how excited they might be!

Do you have other ideas? Share what your family has done!

Jennifer Brannon is a wife, mom of three kids, and a former missionary kid with a passion for helping kids and their families become interested in missions. She is the author of “Missionary Kid Stories” and blogs at Families For Missions.

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  • Kelly says:

    This is not a frugal option but i just learned of a subscription box called Little Loving Hands where kids receive materials to make a craft and learn about a cause and then they send the craft back to be gifted to someone. They have benefited kids and adults in the US and around the world through different non profits. Fun gift idea!

  • Alicia says:

    We read the book Beatrice’s Goat (about a girl whose family receives a goat through Heifer International). Then we looked through a catalog online and decided what we could give as a family. We chose rabbits and mosquito nets. Now as our kids make or receive gifts of money, they are excited to save up for something big like a goat!

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