The gratitude game

Posted: November 12, 2014 in Bible Learning Fun, Holiday Fun, Just for Fun
Tags: , , , , ,

Aren’t we blessed? We’ve been given so much, but sometimes we forget to acknowledge those blessings and the One who gave them. Do you want to help your child feel (and express) more gratitude?

Although I created this activity during the summer months, I thought November would be a perfect time to share with you a fun way to help your little one focus on being thankful for everything he’s been blessed with. This idea can be used anytime of year, and is a great take-along activity for when you need something to keep your child busy and quiet. I’ve also used it in my Bible class for when the children were just arriving.

Set-up is easy. Simply make a list of things your child is/should be thankful for, and search free clip-art for pictures to represent each item on the list. Put them all into a document and print them out.

gratitude game

For our game, I included a variety of material blessings, like houses, vehicles, toys, and books, as well as relational blessings like parents, grandparents, siblings, and pets. Some were very general, like sunshine and rain, while others were specific to my daughter, like her favorites foods (rice, bananas, and ice cream), her dog, and her two brothers and one sister. Some pictures represented physical blessings like a comfortable bed to sleep in, clothes to wear, and food to eat, while other icons stood for spiritual blessings like Christ, His Word (the Bible), and His church. (I used a building to represent the church, but wish I’d shown a group of people instead, for a more accurate representation.) I intentionally made the drawing of Jesus twice as big as all the others, and we talked about how none of the rest of them would mean much without HIM. His sacrifice for us is the greatest blessing we have!

Next, laminate the pages you printed and cut them out, adding a small magnet piece to the back of each.

magnetic pieces for gratitude game

Now, it’s your child’s turn! If you have a white board or some other large magnetic surface, great. But even a cookie sheet works in a pinch, and is nice for when you need this activity to be portable. Plus, it’s the perfect size for your child’s lap!

playing the gratitude game

My daughter was a young four when I made this for her, but it would work well for just about any age of young child. Simply give yours the pieces and allow him to choose which ones he’s thankful for. (Yes, eventually he’ll pick them all.) Each time he adds one to the board, have him tell you what it is and why he’s thankful for it. If you have tailored this to your child’s life, it should be very natural for him to express thanksgiving for each blessing, and it’s a great way to improve his verbal abilities while he has fun and focuses on all God’s done for him. Win, win, win!

One last note…Be sure you don’t use activities like this only at Thanksgiving time. We should be teaching our children that we are blessed all year, and we need to be grateful all year.

Enjoy learning together!

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