scrabble tiles spelling the word Tolerance, with glittery background

We want our children to have the gift of tolerance – being tolerant of both situations and other people. We want our children to be able to understand why people behave the way they do and why people say the things they say, without judgement. This is especially important in the multi-cultural society in which we live as everyone looks different and has cultural differences in the way they go about their lives. When we were growing up this may not have been the case, so we need to pass on the openness that we have now and encourage tolerance in children.

Three Ways To Teach a Tolerant Attitude

  1. Watch your words. Be a role model for your children – be careful about how you talk about others and treat everyone with the same level of respect. This means using kind words and being the same with everyone you interact with.
  2. Don’t judge a book by its cover. Ask your children how they would feel if they were excluded from a game because of how they looked. This will remind them that you should not judge people by how they look and that a friend is a friend no matter what they wear, how they speak, their accent or the colour of their skin. Everyone looks different because they have different parents and different genes. They need to remember that.
  3. Discuss Difference. Ask your child what the differences between each member of your family are and how those individual traits complement and make your family strong. Perhaps make a list. Most families have members who have varying opinions and views and react and behave in different ways. It does not mean we don’t like our family. We love them and are tolerant of them. Our children need to be the same with their friends and the people they meet.

Use these three ways to encourage tolerance in your children and use them yourself. Children often follow our example and if we behave in the same way it will send a message to them and promote tolerant behaviour. The same for being judgmental. Just as children need to be tolerant, they also need to be open-minded about how others behave.

If you need a hand teaching tolerance or other life skills you would like your child to have, then life coaching for kids and teens could be the way forward. Please give me a call if you would like to chat.