Spiritual Sundays: Four Tips for Discussing Spirituality with your Child
Spirituality is a complex topic but so important to discuss with children. So how do you talk to your three or five year old about your spirituality? Here are four tips to open up the conversation. It’s important to note that when talking or teaching about spirituality, you should pick a time when you know they are able to focus.
Lead by example- Your child, believe it or not, sees you as the all knowing adult who they should act like. Demonstrate the important aspects of your spirituality through your actions. If acceptance of all people is important to you, speak kindly about those who are different from you. Your child is watching and soaking everything up like a sponge!
Use stories- Children of all ages love stories! If you are trying to describe something complex, such as mindfulness, stories are a great way to meet your child at
his or her developmental level. You can tell a story about a mindful puppy who likes to stop running and listen to his breath. This gives you a great opportunity to use your child’s favorite animals to personalize the lessons!
Sing, sing sing- This tip is similar to the idea of telling stories. You can sing songs to teach important aspects of your spirituality. Think about the clean up song...we all know what we are supposed to do when that song is being sung. Find a song that explains what you are teaching your child. If prayer is important to you, make up a song about how and why you pray.
Include your children- Most spiritual activities can be modified to include your child. If yoga is a part of your spiritual practice, find a fun yoga video on Youtube and practice this together. If you enjoy meditation as a part of your spirituality, find or write a guided meditation for your child at the appropriate developmental level.