School is out, the children are home, and parents everywhere are planning for the holiday season.
This can be a stressful time, but it can also be the perfect time to create long-lasting memories and cultivate a deep sense of love and celebration that won’t soon be forgotten. So, in addition to the store-bought items, we’ve gathered a few ideas for meaningful gifts to give this holiday season.
The Gift of Time
Spending quality time together is the ultimate gift any time of the year. During the holiday season, it’s easy to become overwhelmed; that emotion could also affect your children. Make it a goal to be intentional and plan special times with them. Have a family meal together once a day and share the day’s happenings. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the season together. Take a drive to see holiday lights around town. Plan a “family movie night.” The kids can choose the movie and make simple snacks. Take a walk outdoors with your family. Have the kids create a family scavenger hunt. From baking cookies to homemade holiday decorations, the time spent together will leave a lasting impression on your kids for years to come.
The Gift of Storytime
Every family has a story to tell. Share memories of holidays past when you were a child. Build on those special memories and involve your children in creating new ones. Ask them to share a favorite holiday memory. Carve out some time each evening to read a favorite book together as a family.
The Gift of Helping Hands
In the Montessori environment, children are taught at an early age to gain independence. Even the smallest hands can help prepare the home for special celebrations while gaining self-confidence. Age -appropriate tasks may include cleaning the house by picking up items and placing them where they belong. Let children choose what they want to wear and encourage them to show off newly acquired skills such as brushing their teeth or hair, putting on their shoes, etc. This is an essential part of their development, and their independence is also the ultimate gift to parents!
Pre-school aged children are becoming more independent and eager to learn new things. Have them help with preparing food that’s special to your family by gathering , measuring, and stirring ingredients. Under guided assistance, they can help wipe down countertops, set the dinner table, or help load the dishwasher
The elementary-aged child is at the prime age to be active in all aspects of the planning process. At this stage, children are developing sound reasoning and thinking skills. Making them a part of the process–creating to-do lists, helping with household chores, and freely expressing ideas for creating new traditions–will give them a sense of accomplishment
The Gift of Giving Back
In this season of giving, find a way for your family to give back to the community. In the Montessori classroom, we believe children are a community of self-directed learners working to improve themselves and their impact on their community. Use this time as a teachable moment to understand the needs of others. Get the children involved in choosing how they want to help. From creating homemade cards to assembling care packages for others or baking and delivering cookies to local first responders, there are many ways your family can show kindness this holiday season. Remember, time spent together helping others is another life-long lesson of compassion.
We wish you a joyous season filled with warm moments and cherished memories surrounded by kindness, comfort, and love throughout the Holiday Season and New Year!