All too often these days it can seem like fewer and fewer people care at all about doing the “right” thing, and morals and morality are slowly becoming extinct.
While virtually every parent does their utmost best to teach their children why they should always strive to be good, there are still way too many children that take this to simply mean, “don’t get in trouble.”
Which for many of them, translates to roughly 5 things:
- Don’t steal
- Don’t disrupt the classroom
- Do your homework.
- Keep your hands to yourself.
- Don’t lie.
Of course, those are all good rules to live by but there are several things you can teach them about morality at an early age and, hopefully, they’ll carry the lessons with them throughout their lives. From helping with donations for homeless shelters to realizing that “finders” doesn’t always equal “keepers,” taking a few minutes to review this list could help drive home the true meaning of morality.
Be Tolerant of Differences
This is definitely a lesson that needs to be taught early. Children will emulate what they see and hear and once they are of school age, you have no real way of monitoring what they are subjected to. Teaching them early to be completely tolerant of all differences is critical and truly one of your most important jobs as a parent these days.
Donations for Homeless Shelters
Something as simple as teaching them to collect blankets and new pairs of socks throughout the year for donations to homeless shelters can go a long way with teaching them morality. Show them how to have compassion for the less fortunate and that they’re never too young to lend a hand.
Lost & Found
They need to know that just because they find something on the sidewalk, parking lot, or playground that it doesn’t mean they get to keep it. No matter how much the item is worth, they need to understand “emotional” attachment and value as well as the impact the loss of anything can be devastating. Whether it’s a cheap Matchbox car or a wallet full of money, they should always turn it into the lost and found or proper authorities.
Teach them that generosity doesn’t always have to involve money. Helping an elderly neighbor with her trash each week, shoveling her sidewalk when he/she is working on their own. In short, teach them the old “treat others as you want to be treated.”
Take Responsibility for Your Actions
This is one that will (hopefully) stick with them throughout their lives. If they do something wrong at home or school, no matter what sort of punishment they think they may be forthcoming, they have to take responsibility for it. Denials, lies, and attempting to shift blame to others is all too common these days and definitely not a trait you want in your child at any age.