I know Lucy is only three, but I’ve witnessed some extremely ungrateful behaviors from her over the past few weeks. As we enter the holiday season, I really want to try and help her understand that not everyone is as fortunate as she and Emily are. This is not an easy concept for a three-year-old to understand, but that’s not going to stop me from trying!
I googled service projects to do with toddlers, and found the Cards for Hospitalized Kids website.
I liked what I read, and knew this would be a great way to get Lucy (and her cousins!) involved in a service project.
Cards for Hospitalized Kids sends cards to sick children in hospitals all over the country. They accept cards for all holidays and just general greeting cards as well, but I figured there’s no better way to help everyone get excited about making cards than by making it Christmas themed!
I grabbed a bunch of red and green card stock, a Christmas coloring book, and all kinds of Christmas stickers.
We had family over to celebrate my mom’s birthday this past weekend, so once the cake was eaten and Emily was down for a nap we pulled out the supplies and got busy!
At first, the adults started out just helping the kids, but we eventually sat down and started making cards ourselves. It was contagious!
After about 45 minutes, we had a pile of the sweetest cards!
There are a few guidelines to follow, which can be found on the website, but they are pretty basic. They prefer that you write uplifting, encouraging messages rather than things like “get well soon” or “feel better.” This helps put the focus on something other than the poor children’s illnesses. You’re also encouraged to sign only your first name and then put the state you are from.
Finally, I dropped them all in an envelope, addressed it, added a little extra Christmas flair, and headed to the post office!
Boy, do I wish this foundation was around when I was teaching! My third graders always did monthly service projects, and this would have been a great one to add to the rotation.
I believe the website says they can accept holiday cards up to a week before Christmas in order to have time to read them and get them delivered to the hospitals.
If you’re a teacher and you need something meaningful to keep your kiddos busy while you take a few minutes to grade a stack of papers . . . this is the project for you!
If you’re a parent and you want your kids to color some pictures for a purpose every once in a while . . . this is the project for you!
I can’t imagine what it would be like to have a child in the hospital at all, let alone at Christmas time, but hopefully these cards will bring a smile to the patients AND their parents.