With the holiday season upon us, it is difficult to NOT get caught up in the crazy frenzy of holiday shopping.  However, I came across a great idea for teaching children about the act of giving of themselves.  This is perfect for children because not only do they give something to someone they love, but they find the joy of creating that gift.

Have everyone in your family draw names from a bag.  In our family, we’re doing just the four of us, but it would be wonderful to get the grandparents and other extended family involved in this, too!  The name you draw is the person for which you will create a gift.  Here are some simple ideas that kids can do for gift-giving:

  • dressed-up coat hangers: have children wrap colorful ribbon around coat hangers to create a beautiful and unique gift.
  • beaded bookmarks: string beads onto yarn and knot at the ends for a lovely way to mark your reading place.
  • magnets for mom: print off different letters and/or words in a variety of colors and fonts from your computer.  Cover both sides of the paper with contact paper, cut out, and attach a self-sticking magnet to the back.  Or, find extra photos and create photo-magnets!
  • for the gardener: choose a packet of favorite seeds and present them in a hand-painted pot.
  • Old standbys: using clean, recycled material, kids can create virtually anything: a pencil holder out of a tin can, a new mail basket out of a plastic milk jug, a colorful paperweight by painting a pretty rock, and even a set of pretty holiday coasters by covering old greeting cards with contact paper.