Montessori Parenting: why using a Gratitude journal with your child

"Sometimes, we should express our gratitude for the small and simple things like the scent of the rain, the taste of your favourite food, or the sound of a loved one's voice" Joseph. B. Wirthlin

Expressing gratitude is one of the many ways to feel more positive about our life.

At the moment, our children might struggle to enjoy life as their activities and social life have been restricted.

In the past, we have tried various ways to express gratitude. I personally list 5 things I am grateful for every day. I don't have a strong journaling practice but I like to repeat what I am grateful for during my meditation practice. 

I wanted to introduce my children to a more regular "journaling" practice and help them to express gratitude.

Dr. Robert Emmons,who is a professor of psychology at the University of California, is an expert on gratitude. He conducted studies involving gratitude journals and found that when people regularly engage in gratitude, they experience measurable psychological, physical, and social benefits such as a better immune system, a higher level of positive emotions, more joy and pleasure, they feel more helpful, generous and compassionate. 

We have been using the Mindful Champs journal for a few weeks and my 8 years loves it.

Mindful champ journal is a gratitude and mindfulness journal aimed at children aged 6 to 12 years old. It was designed by Nima, a Psychology graduate, former Primary School Teacher and a Nursery Manager.

I like that it includes some repetition such as listing 3 things we are grateful for every day, a daily inspiring quote and identifying how we feel. But it also contains a variety of challenges and different ways to explore emotions. Therefore, there is something new to explore every few days while establishing a gratitude routine. 

Some of the challenges:

  • Write a thank you note to your teacher
  • self-love challenge: what is in your control
  • Create a gratitude jar
  • Tell 5 people why you love them
  • and many more!

We fill in the journal every evening together. It is a way for my son and I to connect. It's a time when he can express how he feels and when we can discuss what might worry him. As he writes in it, I may also explain what I am grateful for. As always, it's important that we role-model.

"When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around". Willie Nelson

By practicing Mindfulness with children from an early age, Nima believes it can promote a range of benefits, from self-love to emotional regulation – all of which are necessary tools that can be used as blueprints to carry children into their adult years. Nima strongly believes that these concepts should be taught at an early age to really instil an empowered sense of self into young children – after all, they are the leaders of tomorrow.

I hope that practicing gratitude will become a habit that will help my children all their life.

So what are you grateful for? Do you practice gratitude with your children? Let me know in a comment.

I was kindly offered the Mindful champs journal in exchange of a review. My opinions are my own.

About the Author Carine Robin

Carine Robin has a Master’s Degree in Psychology, specialising in child psychology. She worked for various social services in her home country of Belgium, before moving to Ireland in 2006. It was there that she started working in a nursery and discovered Montessori education. After having her first child, her passion for the philosophy grew and she qualified as a Montessori teacher and managed a preschool. Carine has been running a Montessori based parents and toddler group and coaching families for 9 years. She now also runs an online group for over 14000 parents, sharing her knowledge and passion with people from around the world. In 2018, Carine realised families needed more support and launched her popular online parenting courses and monthly subscription boxes, full of personally designed Montessori materials.