Blog posts by Shilagh Mirgain, PhD

Generosity and Kindness: The Best Lesson This School Year

Teaching Generosity and KindnessWhen we think about the many things we teach our children – reading, math, even manners – it can be easy to forget about the basics – like kindness and generosity. But those are skills we have to develop, even as adults.

Kindness and generosity are one of the best things children can do for their well-being. Research shows that when kids are kind, they feel good about themselves, have more friendships and actually get better grades. But kindness does not always come naturally to children, although there are ways to help encourage it.

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Peer Pressure for Kids

Peer PressurePart of how kids learn about the world and themselves is through their social interactions with their peers. And, there are lots of benefits to peer support. Friends can offer feedback, advice and encouragement.

While peer pressure can have a positive influence, it can also have negative influences – as we know all too well. When kids or teens don’t feel like they belong, it can lead to depression, anxiety and lower emotional health.

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4 Ways to Cultivate Gratitude in Children

Cultivating GratitudeSomeone once said it’s not what kind of world we’re leaving for our children, but what kind of children we’re leaving for our world. Kindness and a sense of gratitude are core values that we need to help encourage in children. And, while encouraging a positive mindset is something to consider all year long, the holidays present a unique opportunity to focus on a message of gratitude.

Studies have shown that children who cultivate gratitude in their lives have better social relationships and do better in school. Being grateful actually contributes to our overall sense of well-being and helps increase our happiness. But, as any parent of a young child knows – especially during the holidays – encouraging gratitude in the midst of pressure for expensive or numerous gifts can be challenging.

So, how do parents help encourage gratitude in children?

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