Search form

About The Blogger

Tisha's picture
Dr. Tisha Shipley has been in education for over 23 years. She has taught Pre-K, Kindergarten, Gifted and Talented 3rd-6th Grades, Dr. Shipley was an elementary principal, a cheer coach, and was on...
Back to Blog

Practicing Gratitude Personally and as a Professional In the Classroom Community

Gratitude has been shown to improve mental health and boost relationships, and it is said to be a game changer in a person's life (Mindful Communication and Such, 2024). Galindo stated, "Research has found that more grateful people have more brain activity in the medial prefrontal cortex, the area associated with learning and decision-making. In the research, this brain activity persisted a month later, suggesting that gratitude has long-lasting effects" (2024). 

Gratitude is defined as the state of being thankful (Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 2024). Doesn't that sound easy? Why don't we do this more? Today might be the day!

Gratitude is something that teachers can personally practice on their own but also teach to their students. Gratitude should be practiced with students in our classroom for many reasons. Let's begin by discussing some ways to practice gratitude personally so that it transcends into our classroom environment. 

Ways to practice gratitude personally:

1. One way to easily incorporate gratitude into daily practice is each day, first thing in the morning, to say out loud what you are grateful for. It can be as simple as having your computer to be able to work.

2. Write down what you are grateful for.

3. Start a gratitude journal.

4. Start a vlog or blog and write or share what you are grateful for.

5. Share your gratitude with others.  This widens the circle of appreciation and shares positivity out in the world. This can happen on social media or in different social circles.

6. Be Mindful this helps you stay in the present moment.

7. Write thank you notes.

8. Think about the people who have inspired or helped you become who you are.

9. Tell people you are grateful for them.

Ways to practice gratitude at home:

1. Create a gratitude board or collage.

2. Practice gratitude during your meals.

3. Volunteer your time.

4. Practice acts of kindness.

5. Donate or give back.

6. Practice mindful breathing.

7. Express gratitude in the moment.

Instilling gratitude in children has shown that they become happier (Morin, 2024). 

Ways to practice gratitude in the classroom:

  1. Build a classroom community from day 1.
  2. Daily journal or draw pictures of what they are thankful for. This teaches them to think outside the box.
  3. Teach them to say thank you. 
  4. Ask gratitude questions and talk about gratitude and what it means.
  5. Praise them for having gratitude (Morin, 2024). 
  6. Teach them to perform acts of kindness: sharing, helping a friend, coloring a thank you picture, etc. 
  7. Model gratitude for your students: Say thank you, share what you are grateful for, and express gratitude in your classroom community. 
  8. Start the day by sharing what each person is grateful for. 

Projects you can do in your classroom community: 

  1.  Family gratitude projects.
  2. Gratitude boards up in the room.
  3. Gratitude jar. Encourage children to draw or write what they are grateful for. 
  4. Gratitude rituals. 
  5. Thank families: Call them, write a thank you note to them, and share with them what gratitude is. 
  6.  Share with families. Encourage them to make gratitude a priority at home. 

The more you talk about or think about what you are grateful for, the more you will begin feeling more thankful. Sharing your gratefulness helps you feel happier, contributes to your positive mental health, boosts immunity and heart health, and helps with communication and connection (Mindful Communication and Such, 2024). 

What are some ways you think you can incorporate gratitude into your daily life? How can you also bring gratitude practices/rituals into your classroom community? 



Galindo, P. (2024). What is Gratitude? 12 Tips for how to start a Gratitude Practice. 

Merriam-Webster Dictionary. (2024). Gratitude

Mindful Communication and Such. (2024). How to Practice Gratitude.

Morrin, A. (2024). How To Teach Children Gratitude.