Children everywhere look forward to the pile of presents under their tree come Christmas morning, but they may not even realize there are children out there who don’t have the same good fortune.

Raise a Santa,
not a Scrooge

The true meaning of Christmas giving can sometimes be lost amid the flurry of wrapping paper, wish lists to Santa and endless gift giving and receiving. Help your child understand the importance of giving back — especially during the holidays.

Progressive giving

Kids today tend to be as (or more!) tech-savvy than their parents. With this in mind, help your children contribute to ending world hunger with the simple click of the mouse at The Hunger Site, where sponsors will pay for cups of food for every click. Make it part of your kids' daily routine during Christmas — and beyond.

20 great ideas: Teaching charity to our children >>

Let your angel earn her wings

You can't go shopping anywhere from the day after Thanksgiving until Christmas without noticing a few strategically placed Angel Trees. Explain the concept of selecting a gift for a child in need, then invite your child to pick an angel and help shop for his or her requested gift. Allow your child to feel the warm and fuzzy feeling of doing good for someone else.

Have the talk: Teaching kids about charity >>

Give before receiving

Before Christmas morning, encourage your children to make room for his anticipated new toys by donating his old or no-longer-used ones. While it might be tough at first for your child to give away his old things, continue to explain the importance of giving to others who are not as fortunate.

Allow your child to see you donating your old items as well to help realize that giving back and helping others is an important part of your life too.

Salute the brave

If your children aren't already aware of the daily sacrifices the members of our military make, instill in them patriotism right along with Christmas charity. Give 2 the Troops collects Christmas cards, holiday books and movies, decorations, spiritual items and more, compiling care packages for members of the United States Armed Forces.

While it may be hard for your young children to understand the concept of the military, they will likely be able to relate to missing home if they were far away.

Teaching kids to make a difference in the world >>

Reach out to another generation

Spread cheer at local nursing home or hospitals by dropping off some cookies or fruit. Many residents of nursing homes don't have regular visitors — or any visitors at all. Call ahead first to determine if there are any dietary restrictions for the residents. Chances are, they'll be thrilled to have the company of energetic, giving children and your children will probably eat up the attention of some new "adopted" grandparents.

More on Christmas charity

6 Ways to teach kids to give at Christmas
Holiday and Christmas cards for a great cause
5 Holiday charity ideas for kids

Tags: volunteering with kids

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Comments

Comments on "Expose your child to the importance of Christmas charity"

Rachel December 14, 2012 | 12:32 PM

Great tips. It's our job as parents to teach kids about giving and the real meaning of Christmas. Don't let the shopping allow you to lose sight of this yourself.

Erin December 14, 2012 | 12:06 PM

Love this!! Totally agree that it's best to teach our kids the importance of giving to those in need. Thanks!

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