Plenty of research on gratitude nowadays shows us that creating a habit of gratitude has multiple benefits. I wrote a little about these benefits back when I presented my Printable Gratitude Journal for Kids.
Now here’s an interesting research update for you. I recently learned from UC Riverside professor and happiness expert Sonja Lyubomirsky that keeping a daily gratitude journal is not always good for us.
Here’s the scoop. College students who named up to five things they were grateful for on a schedule of only once per week actually reported being happier than those who kept a schedule of three times per week.
The key, according to Lyubomirsky, is not to make your gratitude practice a chore. Instead, make it a good fit for you.
Were you met with resistance when you established a daily ritual of gratitude journaling with your children or students?
If not, by all means, keep it up! If the kids protest with whines and slouched soldiers whenever it’s time to practice gratitude that might be your cue to consider scaling back a bit.
Your kids might also enjoy a little variety in the mix. To that end I would like to add a new gratitude activity for kids.
Acrostic poems use each letter of a given word to begin the lines of a poem. In this case the word is GRATITUDE. All lines of the poem relate to the topic word.
Acrostics can be simple or complex, which make them easily adaptable to all ages and skill levels. I’ll use a few SUN acrostic poems as examples.
Use single words:
Up in the sky
Nurturing the world below
Use complete sentences:
Sunny days inspire me.
Underneath the light above, I smile.
Now I am warm.
Just as with gratitude practice, choose whichever method is most appropriate for your child.
You’ll find this free printable, GRATITUDE Acrostic Poem, available in the store.
Use it to create acrostics or simply let the kids challenge themselves to create a list, to think of as many words per line as they can that describe what they are grateful for. Hmmm, how many can you think of?