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A Lesson in Giving: Our Summer Project

As a parent there are so many lessons you want your children to experience and learn. From respecting the natural world through outdoor activities to the simpler acts of sharing and being kind to friends. I often find myself worrying that I don’t make enough time to “set-up” these important lessons for my children – especially around helping others in need.

Even the smallest of acts, like delivering a meal to a sick (or busy) friend, I often think about doing at the time but then don’t follow through because I get caught up in everyday mundane tasks. And I admire those that do this so effortlessly. Then I wonder how I can become that person.

Cradles to CrayonsWell luckily I have partners in Bright Horizons (whose focus on helping children in need is a core part of the curriculum) and my husband. This summer our Bright Horizons center kicked off a Cradles to Crayons initiative – asking parents to donate school supply items to children in need. My husband, in turn, challenged Olivia (age 5) to do chores and tasks around the house to earn money for this. She earned coins for lots of things from clearing the table after dinner to getting dressed in the morning without us asking her a million times. It was a win-win situation.

So with back to school happening this week and the initiative wrapping up, my husband and daughter counted up her money ($25) and we matched it. Then they went shopping. Olivia picked out all sorts of items from colored pencils to glue sticks to pencil holders. She was so proud dropping off the items this morning and showing her teacher all the supplies she picked out for students in need.

And I was proud of her…and my husband…and my center for providing this lesson in giving–for me.

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