Here’s a collection of gratitude activities for kids and adults that provides a simple way to cultivate an attitude of gratitude at home or in the classroom. Below you will find lessons in gratitude, thankful activities, gratitude games, and gratitude crafts to help encourage and teach children about the concept of gratitude.
Gratitude activities and gratitude crafts for kids provide a fun and easy way to nurture an “attitude of gratitude” in the home or classroom. Gratitude brings abundance. When we are grateful for what we have, we get more of what we are thankful for. Simple, but true. When we teach and model gratitude to our children, they can find greater happiness in life.
Scroll down to find a fun round-up of gratitude activities for kids that includes; how to teach children to be grateful, games that teach gratitude, and gratitude crafts that can help children learn how to express gratitude.
You will notice that many of these gratitude activities mention Thanksgiving and the holidays. Still, none of them are specific to the holidays–you will not find any Thanksgiving Turkey here. However, if you are looking for gratitude activities specifically for Thanksgiving, pop over to have a look at this fun round-up of Thanksgiving gratitude activities and crafts!
Related: Thanksgiving Traditions
Gratitude Activities and Crafts for Children
Gratitude and grateful thinking are about expressing appreciation for the blessings in our lives instead of being fixated on the negative aspects of what we do not have. This collection of gratitude activities and gratitude crafts can help parents and educators teach children how to express gratitude for life.
Practicing gratitude has been researched to be associated with increased levels of optimism and empathy. These fun gratitude crafts and activities can help children and adults establish the habit of paying attention to the good things in life.
“When we are thankful for what we have, we get more of what we are grateful for and find greater happiness in life.”Nell Regan
In other words, when we give more of our attention to the people, events, places, and things that we are thankful for, it can lead to the habit of feeling grateful and fulfilled.
Most families and classrooms approach the concept of gratitude and thankfulness at Thanksgiving and around the holidays. This round-up of gratitude activities and crafts can help teach children simple lessons on gratitude, friendship, and generosity throughout the whole year.
Below you will find preschool gratitude activities, kindergarten gratitude activities, games to teach gratitude, and fun gratitude activities for kids (and adults) of all ages!
4 Gratitude Lessons
If you are looking for an effective way to teach children to be more grateful, the articles and books listed below provide positive parenting tips for raising grateful kids in an entitled world. Use these simple lessons in gratitude to teach kids about gratitude and thankfulness.
- 11 Ways to Raise a Grateful Child | BonBon Break
- Teaching Gratitude to Children with Gratitude Worksheet for Kids | Sight and Sound Reading
- Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World by Kirsten Welch
- The Me, Me, Me, Epidemic: A Step by Step Guide to Raising Capable, Grateful Kids, in an Over Entitled World by Amy McCready
Related: Encouraging Kindness Towards Nature
8 Gratitude Activities for Kids (Thankful Activities)
Gratitude activities for preschoolers, kindergarteners, and kids of all ages (even the young at heart)! You will find lots of fun gratitude crafts for kids (and adults) in the next section.
1. Start a Gratitude Journal
- Download and print the “I Am Grateful for” gratitude journal free printable worksheet. Next, draw or write down everything that you have to be grateful for in the fun little boxes.
- Learn how to start a gratitude journal with “5 Simple Steps to Help Your Child Start a Gratitude Journal” by Growing Book by Book for Lasso the Moon.
- Use FREE printable gratitude journal prompts to help children learn to notice the blessings in their lives through the practice of gratitude journaling.
- Make one of the gratitude journals described in “Thankful Crafts” listed below, or, download and print free printable gratitude journal pages for kids HERE or HERE.
2. Make it a Habit to Write Thank You Cards and Notes
Encourage children to write thank-you notes and cards for the people that do nice things for them. Making and sending thank you cards is a fun way to thank loved ones for their generosity and love and help children cultivate a sense of gratitude.
3. Gratitude Wall or Dry Erase Board
- Create a simple gratitude wall like this gratitude craft and activity from What Do We Do All Day. Feel free to make it your own and embellish it in any way you wish.
- Print out this free thankful dry erase board from Bren Did and hang it in a prominent place in the home. We have ours in the dining room and use it to share what we are grateful for at dinner each night.
4. Gratitude Drawing Prompts
Help your children understand and feel grateful through art with gratitude drawing prompts. First, visit Lasso the Moon to find ten fun gratitude drawing prompts for kids. next, invite children to draw their answers onto the “I am Grateful” gratitude journal page!
5. Go on a Gratitude Scavenger Hunt or Thankful Nature Walk
- Invite children to go on a gratitude scavenger hunt! Simple Acres has a free printable for a gratitude scavenger hunt that you can print and share with your children at home or in the classroom. Find the link to download and print HERE.
- Go on a gratitude photo scavenger hunt on Thanksgiving or any time of year. Pop over to Let’s Get Together to see how they did it!
- Encourage children to be kind to nature and express their gratitude for the great outdoors by going on a thankful nature walk. Simple Play Ideas has a few simple ideas to share about going on a thankful walk with children.
Related: Sensory Bin Nature Scavenger Hunt
6. Join the Gratitude Graffiti Project
Start a movement like the gratitude graffiti project, a daily practice of purposeful appreciation of one’s life through community art.
Through art, people can create, contemplate, and awaken a whole new perspective on how to find gratitude in every moment.
7. Pass Out Smile it Forward Kindness Cards
A simple kindness activity that doubles as a fun gratitude activity for kids is to pass out smile it forward cards. Smiling at someone it forward card is a great way to share kindness, appreciation, and gratitude with anyone that crosses your path.
Download and print smile it forward kindness cards from Kids Activities Blog.
Related: Kindness Cookies
8. Play Gratitude Games for Kids
It’s fun to play games to teach gratitude to help remind preschoolers, kindergarteners, and kids of all ages of the many things they have to be grateful for. Try any of the thankful game ideas below!
- Gratitude Pick-up Sticks – Count your blessings with this homemade version of Pick-up Sticks with a gratitude twist by Teach Beside Me.
- Punch Gratitude Game – Turn expressing gratitude into a fun family activity with THIS Gratitude Game.
- M&M Gratitude Game – Gather the family, and share what you’re thankful for while enjoying a little treat with THIS fun gratitude game for kids!
Related: Turkey Leaf Lantern Craft
8 Gratitude Crafts for Kids (Thankful Crafts)
Gratitude crafts and activities provide a simple way to help children learn how to express gratitude. Practicing gratitude is a beautiful way to help children develop an attitude of gratitude for life.
1. How to Make Homemade Gratitude Journals
- Decorating gratitude journals crafts for kids are a fun way to teach gratitude. Learn how to make your own DIY cover for gratitude journals over on The Chaos and the Clutter.
- Another fun gratitude craft similar to a gratitude journal is a thankful book for toddlers, preschoolers and kindergarteners, is making a thankful book like THIS from Mama’s Happy Hive. Help children (especially young children that don’t know how to write yet) with this fun gratitude exercise for kids.
2. Gratitude Stones
Gratitude stones are a simple gratitude craft for preschoolers, kindergarteners, and kids of all ages. Learn how to make Gratitude Stones, such as the gratitude stones found HERE, to cultivate an attitude of gratitude from an early age.
Another fun idea is to make painted rocks with words of gratitude. Stones painted with thankful words can even be hidden for others to find!
Related: How to Paint Rocks
3. Gratitude Vision Board
Making a gratitude vision board is one of my absolute favorite gratitude activities and crafts for kids and adults.
Help your children learn how to make a gratitude board like the vision board for kids found HERE. Don’t forget to make one for yourself while you’re at it!
4. Gratitude Jar, Thankfulness Jar, or Blessing Jar
Teaching our kids to be grateful is one of the most important lessons we can share with children. Invite children to count their blessings with a Thankfulness Jar activity. Putting prayers into a gratitude jar is a simple way to help our kids establish the habit of being grateful.
5. Gratitude or Thankful Leaves
6. Gratitude Sunflower Craft
Inspire preschoolers to express gratitude with THIS fun gratitude craft. Invite children to use each petal of a sunflower to represent something that they are thankful for.
Related: Growing Sunflowers with Children
7. Gratitude Mobile or Wind Spinners
Create a gratitude mobile and hang it somewhere everyone sees daily, or make some thankful wind spinners like THESE from Make and Takes.
8. Thankful Tree
Thankful trees are perfect for Thanksgiving, but they can be used as a fun gratitude craft and activity all year long. Try this easy thankful tree printable. Or, have a look at this list of thankful tree ideas that you can make and use with children at home or in the classroom.
Children’s Books About Gratitude and Thankfulness
Help nurture gratitude in the home or classroom with Children’s gratitude Books That Inspire Thankfulness. Click on the link to see all of our favorite gratitude books for kids.
Thankful Gratitude Activities and Crafts for Kids
Showing gratitude with these simple gratitude activities and gratitude crafts for kids can create an attitude of gratitude in the home or classroom.
Expressing gratitude and thankfulness is researched to be associated with increased levels of optimism and empathy. When we are thankful for what we have, we get more of what we are grateful for. Thus, when we are grateful, we can find greater happiness in life.
This collection of gratitude activities and crafts can help parents and educators teach children how to express gratitude for life.
If you are looking for fun gratitude activities to do on and around Thanksgiving, check out this incredible collection of Thanksgiving gratitude activities and crafts.
Don’t wait–share your gratitude today!
Click on the link to learn more about Rhythms of Play!