Social & Emotional Development

8 Ways To Show Gratitude to Community Workers

By: Highlights Editorial
Little girl in pink sweater giving thumbs up sign.
2 minutes to read
Ages 3+
Social Emotional

Raising children to be empathetic and kind toward other people — beyond just friends and family members — can feel like a daunting job for many parents. Fortunately, there’s a time-tested way to do it: parents can teach kindness and compassion by setting the right example for their kids.

Sheila Sjolseth, author of Creating Kindness at Home, suggests encouraging your kids to look around throughout the week for things that have been done for you and your family especially by people you may not have noticed. More than likely, there’s a lot to spot!

Ask your kids these questions to get them thinking about who helps them every day behind the scenes:

Last night, we moved a full garbage can to the curb. This morning, it’s empty. Where did the garbage go?

How does mail end up in our mailbox?

When someone calls 911, who do they talk to?

How does a new book by your favorite author end up in the library eBook collection?

How do potholes get fixed?

Where did the food we are eating come from?

Who else helped us today?  

Here are eight ways you and your kids can safely show your gratitude to the people making a difference in your community right now:

1. Make a large sign for your window to thank essential workers as they walk or drive by. 

2. Record a Thank you! video and send it to friends or family members who are working in essential roles. 

3. Write notes of encouragement to mail carriers and delivery workers and put them in your mailbox or outside your front door. 

4. Leave chalk notes and drawings next to your garbage can for garbage collectors to enjoy.

5. Send cards to servicemen and servicewomen who continue to protect our country overseas. 

6. Smile, wave, or give a thumbs up when you see helpers in your community even if it’s just through your window.

7. Call any helpers you know to check in and see if there’s anything they need that you can safely provide.

8. Do everything you can to follow the guidelines recommended by health officials so that all the helpers stay safe and healthy.

One of our deepest desires as parents is to raise kids who are grateful and kind. Here's one easy way to get on the road to gratitude: Take these free thank you card templates for a spin! They can be decorated and personalized by tiny hands, and their recipients are likely to keep them forever.

Author Photo
By: Highlights Editorial