Teaching Appreciation to Kids

We were just away on vacation and upon arriving home I discovered that my cute, sweet, yellow minions had turned into the crazy purple minions! Something had to be done immediately!

Awhile ago, I read an interesting idea from a school teacher who was tired of the tattling in her class. Her solution was to make a “Tattle Jar” in which, rather than raise their hands and tattle, the kids would write down the offense, put it in the jar {unless it was dangerous, of course, then they could come up to the teacher immediately}, and once a day the teacher would review the jar. More often than not, the offenses were frivolous and needed no further action. If they were something more serious, the teacher would address it at that time. I liked this idea as my minions are toying with the fine art of tattling.

When I discussed this concept with my husband, he pointed out that it may spark a desire within our children to search for errors rather than the good. I can totally see my minions run down this path, so, the jar idea got tabled.

Until today…

Since my purple minions have been home {two days} with much back-talk and whining, I decided that I needed to do something positive in order to force a mind-shift and save my yellow minions before it was too late.

Then I remembered something we did at my work years ago, a “Nice-to-be-Nice” Box.

The purpose of this box was to “catch” people doing something nice at work. You write the nice thing you see down on a piece of paper and once a month a winner was selected. More often than not, the person didn’t even know they had been caught doing something nice and they got a little bonus in their paycheck. The nice notes could be anything from “she brought in treats for the office” to “he lent me a pen in a meeting when I forgot one.” The point was to focus on finding the good moments. It also encouraged people to put in the little extra effort to do kind things.

I quickly got to work! Taking an old pasta sauce jar {I freaking love these things!} and some scrapbook paper, I glued on some “Team” sayings as I explained the purpose of the jar to my minions.


Their mission is to “catch” people doing kind things. They can write down what they see or draw a picture. Each week, we will pick a winner and that person will get a treat. It might be a date night with Daddy. It might be an extra book at the library. We will determine that at the time each week.

We determined, too, that we would include neighbors 😉

The point is that everybody has a yellow minion inside of them. Sometimes, we have to look through the purple to see it though. When you search for good, you are bound to find it!

Have a great day!!!


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