9 Genius Tips For Raising Generous, Loving Kids

Photo: Jacob Lund | Canva
little kids playing with bubbles

By Lauren Levy

Considering what oftentimes feels like a lack of generous adults in this world, it's more important now than ever to change the next generation in a positive way.

Instead of making excuses because of age for why your child doesn't share or is entirely focused on his or her own wants and needs, get started early on shaping their worldview and encourage giving to others. Not only will these kinds of behaviors help them make friends now, but they will also benefit your child as they enter adult years as an individual who is a team player with a strong sense of empathy as well as an unwavering moral compass.

Here are 9 parenting tips for raising generous, loving kids:

1. Praise when you see it in others

An easy way to emphasize opportunities to be generous without making your little one feel bad for neglecting to realize it themselves is by making a point to praise others when they are thoughtful and charitable toward others.

By spreading positive feedback and highlighting their peers' desirable actions, you can open up your child's mind to helping out in situations when it might not have even occurred to them before.

RELATED: Mom Accused Of Raising 'Entitled Adults' After Saying Her Kids Don't 'Owe' Her Anything Just Because She Gave Them Life

2. Get them involved in giving at an early age

There are age-appropriate ways to start teaching generosity to every age group. Instead of assuming your child is too young, realize that it's always important to focus on kindness and how their actions impact others. This will help to raise people who not only value considerate treatment but also demonstrate it.

3. Practice making it fun

Don’t make giving to others feel like a chore or a difficult task to accomplish. Instead, in each kind of act they do, focus on how good they feel after and how easy it is to make someone else smile.

4. Talk about empathy

Establish an open dialogue with your child from an early age. The sooner they understand not only how someone else is feeling, but also the power that their words and actions have in making that person feel better or worse, the sooner they will feel more empowered to go out of their way to help whenever possible.

RELATED: The Secret To Raising Genius Kids Is Way More Obvious Than We Think

5. Teach them the value of a dollar

Not only will having firsthand experience in earning their own money helps keep your child from taking it for granted when somebody is generous with them, but it also allows them to see that it's always possible to make more money. This encourages them to be generous with what they have and appreciate what they are given by others.

6. Do it together

By participating in charitable events and random acts of kindness as a family, you not only show your little one the joy that can come from sharing and helping but also that this value applies to everyone not just the smallest members of the family.

7. Don't just say it — do it

Parents know that children pick up on their traits and words even when they don't intend it. Kids demonstrate these characteristics both in front of adults and when they aren't around. By being an unrelenting example of how people should treat others in every situation, your actions will become second nature so your child can follow your lead even when you aren't there.

RELATED: Mom Praised For 'Genius' Hack She Uses To Prevent Arguments With Her Teen Daughter

8. And when you do it, do it in the open

Even if you're generous at work or donate to charity, it's up to moms and dads to model these desired behaviors at all times and not just when they think their kiddo is paying attention.

Children pick up on way more than what many parents realize, and by making it a priority to be generous whenever the opportunity arises (and not just when it's a grand show to put on for your child), you teach your kid that these gestures should be the standard and not just the special exception.

9. Volunteer with them

Kids need to expand their worldview before they can begin to understand the potential of their actions and the grand impact they can have on others. Remove them for their own little bubble and volunteer with them, so they not only learn gratitude for what they have but can also develop a passion for helping those who are less fortunate while understanding the scope of their needs.

RELATED: The 9 Worst Mistakes You Can Make As A Parent

Lauren Levy is a former assistant editor at PopSugar. She's worked on staff at Fast Company, New York Magazine, the Fader, and Apple News. She is the founding Deputy Editor at the radical Jewish quarterly PROTOCOLS.

This article was originally published at PopSugar. Reprinted with permission from the author.