Tips for teaching your kids how to give - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Tips for teaching your kids how to give

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You've heard it said many times that it's better to give than to receive, and this is the perfect time of year gives parents the perfect chance to make the spirit of giving a way of life for their kids.

Susan McGary and her family do Christmas up big, but under all the glitter, they're just trying to teach their 9-year-old daughter Kaleigh the true meaning of the season.  She says for them, giving back is the best way to celebrate the holiday.

Kaleigh and her family have already made cards for seniors and hosted a breakfast for single parents and their children at their church.   

"I want her to have the experience to know just how blessed we are," said her mom.

Dr. Nancy McGarrah says what the McGarys are doing is exactly what parents should do: teach their children about giving.  She says you can start by setting an example.

"If kids see us writing checks to organizations, giving at church all year long, then they are going to pick that up--they are going to notice that," said McGarrah.  

McGarrah says it's never too young to start.  

"You are actually teaching them about empathy," she explained.  "If they can learn to put themselves in other people's shoes, then that will serve them well as adults."

Dr. McGarrah says one good way to get your children involved in a charitable cause is to involve other children.  She says there is power in numbers, and if you child is a bit shy, they may find it easier to do when they're not alone.

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