How can I teach my child about gratitude?

I am just feeling some kind of way right now. My mom surprised my family of 4 (myself, hubby, 5yo and 17 months old) with tickets to Disney On Ice today as an experience Christmas gift. The show was great! My 5yo is an ungrateful little turd. When he found out where we were going, he said, “I like surprises with animals.” There’s still hope for the 17-month-old, but of course, he just requires a lot still at this age. I’m just to this point where if my older son is gonna be ungrateful and not have fun (according to him) then I just don’t want to even make plans with him in mind. If he’s gonna be a buzz kill, then I want to do what I want to do. If he’s gonna complain then I’d rather listen to him complain while at the beach than at Disney on Ice. Ya know? Anyone else experiences this? Any moms with older kids… does it get better? Or am I just selfish? How do I teach him gratitude?


A 5 yr old can still learn to be grateful.


Honestly I think it’s just the age. We have the same issue with ours but we remind him every time he does this to be greatful and that not everyone is as blessed as we are


I’d take every toy away from him start having him donate to those in need. Maybe don’t give nor buy your child everything he wants thats how they start expecting.

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Zen Pig it’s a book series for kids. It’s amazing.


He’s 5. They have no filter. Talk with him. Explain. Help him to understand his words and attitude affect those around him. He’s not a lost cause. It gets better. And when the teenage years begin, you’ll be happy to hear you get to do this all over again.


Well tell him that just like that. Tell him if you dont want to do what someone put alot of time and thought into for him next time we will plan something that i like to do. They’re old to understand what your saying. I start teachin the kids very young to appreciate what they have. Get a gift that tou they want and give it to someone else. Show them that theres alot of kids out there that have nothing and that itll help someone else out alot! Maybe tell him well if you dont want to go do what we had planned ill give the ticket to yo to someone else that really wants to go and tou can stay home it works everytime. My daughter one day was complaining about someone wanting food that she had to take home so we went over and gave the food to them when we got home because i explained to her that maybe they dont have food at home or maybe their hunger or maybe they just want it but we never know for sure why they are asking so we should be kind and share what we have even if we dont have much to give. I turn everything i can into giving back to others. And how to be kind and grateful they may not understand at the time and they may throw a fit about giving the ticket away or not going where they wantnjust explain why your doing what you are. Tell him well this we get to go to the beach because you didnt like the last suprise we planned for you so i planned one i would like.

You yourself have to model grateful behavior. That’s how kids learn so over every small thing speak gratitude of it. Every single night my spouse thanks me for a hot dinner, even if it’s delivery, and I thank him for going to work. I thank my children for washing their hands or putting away their things. I say out loud that I’m so thankful for blah blah blah. It’s a reminder for all of us and keeps gratitude in the forefront of our minds always.
We’ve always done this and my kids are now 8 and 11 very very respectful and grateful children. Just lead by example.


It’s a son and it’s a child… they’re not going to want to see disney.


Hes 5 and hes opening communicating his like and dislikes. Which is great but of course we want our kids to be grateful and to realize not everything is going to entirely go the way we want some times but maybe reminding him they took the time to think about you guys as a family to let you go on this event and it still can be just as fun. It sounds ridiculous but I overuse manners with them thanking them for every little thing they do listen on and I expect and remind the same from them. Its just the age momma theres still hope !!

My son was very demanding and never said please or thank you. Finally I looked at him and I said “I think you’re telling ME that I need to be more polite when I speak to people.” From that day I’ve been more polite and said behavior is wearing off on my son.
Lesson being sometimes kids behavior is a reflection of the adults they see.


Dont take him… problem should sort itself out

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I have boys and can say with certainty none would have enjoyed Disney on ice I probably would have but we never went because I knew that is the reaction I would have gotten.


I try to teach my kids gratitude by giving to those in need. We have been blessed by strangers many times and I always believe in paying it forward.

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Gratefulness, respect and tact is taught by the parent. It’s okay for them to not be happy about everything but they also have to be taught that no one is required to give them anything so they should be grateful for a gift received. If you don’t start teaching that now at a young age it’s 100% harder the older they get.


My great grandson is 2 1/2 and he says please ,thank you,your welcome and excuse me , he has been doing this since he started to talk, I think it’s how you bring my them up.


Maybe explain it to him? I’m sorry you didn’t like the show but (whoever bought the tickets) thought you would like it. They went through a lot of trouble to give us, as a family, a nice gift. Ask him if he even wants to go before going? Show him videos of previous shows to give him a clue of what the show is about.

My boyfriend LOVES Disney and always has so those saying he’s a boy so he won’t like Disney are silly.

It may have been too long of a show?? Maybe next time if he doesn’t want to go have someone fun babysit. I remember going to shows as a kid and thinking oh this is cool but get bored really quickly.

A fun playdate with a cool babysitter (whether it be family or someone you hire) might be more fun for him.

I think at this age they don’t have a filter really. Teaching them how to say things differently helps though. For example my (as of today) 3 year old will say I don’t want you in here. I tell her that saying I want to be alone sounds nicer and the other way hurts my feelings. She’s been saying it the nicer way now :grin:


Next time tell you where you’re going If he doesn’t want to go he can stay at home

5 year olds don’t really think before they speak. They are completely honest and super picky. I honestly believe that this is normal for a 5 year old. Maybe teach him to express his feelings later in private but to be kind and say thank you to grandma when he’s around her.


This is the time to teach him! Best way to do so is to show him not everyone has stuff like that ! As well as continuing to do that there whole life! Take him to volunteer! Show him the other side of life even if he doesn’t experience the struggle he can still be apart of it and understand it through others! The holidays are a good time to volunteer at kitchens ! Food banks! Shelters human and animal! Do it many times a year not just holidays ! and try different places !

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