G-G-Grateful: A Do-It-Yourself Thankfulness Song
What are YOU thankful for?
Young children may not yet understand that everyone has their own thoughts and feelings, but parents, caregivers, and teachers can help them learn to care about others and to feel thankful. By 2-3 years old, children can be thankful for specific things (like a pet or a favorite toy) and by about 4 years old, children can feel grateful for more abstract things (like love and liberty) (source). Children can practice saying, “Thank you” and learn to connect those words with the feeling of gratitude as they grow.
So, how can you raise a thankful child? Talk about gratitude, make thankfulness a habit in your family, and be a gratitude role model! Research shows that parents who show gratitude have children who act more grateful (source).
Make Your Own "Thank You" Song
With Thanksgiving approaching and thankfulness top of mind, our friend, the amazingly talented composer and singer Royer Bockus created an original Thanksgiving Song, “G-G-Grateful,” to prompt Big Hearted parents, caregivers, children, and educators to create their OWN original songs about gratefulness.
It’s like a template for you to use to create your own family thankfulness song. This will help you model your thankfulness while also helping your little one explore gratitude.
Follow These 3 Steps
Listen to the song together:
Here’s the version with lyrics. Notice how Royer names and sounds out the things she’s grateful for as she sings!
Here’s the audio with no lyrics:
Brainstorm what you and your child are thankful for. It could be people (like Grandma!), places (like “our” rock in the park!), ideas (like freedom and love) or favorite foods, pets, flowers, books, etc.
This is a great chance to help children understand what “gratitude” and “thankfulness” are. These are big words that might be a bit too abstract for younger toddlers to understand. It’s OK: this is a moment for teaching and learning!
Take turns, sharing what makes each of you thankful.
Now it’s time to turn your “thank yous” into a song!
Play the music without words in the background as you create your own song together.
Just creating your own version of “G-G-Grateful” is enough to build gratitude — but if you want to bring the song to your family’s Thanksgiving table and each add a line, please feel free!
Share your version of G-G-Grateful on social media and tag #bigheartworld! We want to hear what you and your little one create.