Teaching Children About Caring

Image of Carrie the Caring Cat

For young children, caring means:

  • Being kind to people.
  • Showing friends and family that you care.
  • Saying please and thank you.
  • Helping people.

Parents are the most important teacher a child will ever have. Your children will learn by the example you set for them. If your children see you acting in a caring way, they will want to act in a caring way, too.

Infants and caring

When your infant cries and you respond, you are teaching your infant about caring for others. When your child coos or smiles and you coo or smile back, you are teaching your infant about caring. Holding your baby and playing with your baby are ways to be kind to her and demonstrate that you care.

If you are frustrated by a situation - perhaps your baby is crying a lot because she is sick - then talk to an adult rather than taking your frustration out on your child. The crying is a signal that she needs your help, and it is your job to help her; this is part of being a caring individual.

Toddlers and caring

Toddlers are very interested in their newly acquired skills. Toddlers are also sometimes frustrated because they want something and have trouble expressing themselves. These two characteristics may lead to two common activities: hitting and biting. Such events are perfect opportunities to teach your toddler about caring. Explain to your toddler in simple language that soft touches are better than bites or hits. Explain that we are kind to our friends and family. You may find that you are repeating yourself often, but one day you will be surprised to notice that your preschooler really was listening and knows how to act kindly toward others.

Preschoolers and caring

You can do many things every day to encourage your preschool child to develop into a caring individual.

You can...

  • Hug your child.
  • Play a game with your child.
  • Take your child to the park.
  • Listen to your child.
  • Tell your child that you like what he or she is doing.
  • Read your child a story.
  • Let your child help you fix dinner.
  • Tuck your child into bed.
  • Spend time with your children individually.
  • Blow your child a kiss.
  • Talk to your child about all the people he or she cares about.
  • Teach your children to care for each other.
  • Talk to your child about the people he comes in contact with such as the mail carrier or the grocery clerk.
3/15/2005 4:12:55 AM
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