Gratitude in action - Aspen Country Day School


Gratitude in action

November 29, 2021

Monthly themes at ACDS

At Aspen Country Day School, we believe that children learn best in a caring community that challenges and nurtures them to become their best selves — as students, as friends, and as community members. Each month has its own theme (left), and teachers work with children to deepen their understanding of these concepts. In classrooms, at recess and lunch, and in the school community, they practice important life skills and attitudes that they can use to contribute to the greater good throughout their lives.

Our November theme is Gratitude. Children gather in Lower School class meetings and Middle School SEL classes and advisories to talk about what gratitude looks and feels like. In the month of November, various grades made posters, chains of gratitude, and reflection pieces that are displayed throughout the school. 

The Seventh Grade decorated jars and filled them with conversation starters about gratitude for their Second Grade buddies to share with their families. Sixth Graders created a large paper chain of things that they are grateful for such as family, food, friends and school. Middle School students also spent time writing in their journals about the things that they are grateful for. They experienced first hand the power of sharing their thoughts and feelings with others. 

Second Graders display their “gratitude chain” — on each link, children wrote something that makes them feel grateful.

Along with their gratitude paper chains, children in Kindergarten through Fifth Grade also made a “grateful garden” as whole-class projects. Many students mentioned being grateful for their health and strong body. The Fourth and Fifth Graders commented that the pandemic and wearing masks has made them more aware of not taking their health for granted.

Older students wrote little notes to their younger buddies to introduce the “gratitude jars”
In those jars: conversation-starters about gratitude. Seventh Graders gave these to their buddies in Second Grade.
Buddy Grades teamed up to make “gratitude chains” — on each link, children wrote something that makes them feel grateful.
The buddy grade program weaves the school community together across the grades.

Lower School Counselor Mary Stokes and Middle School Counselor Morgan Atkins used some of these prompts to help children reflect on the monthly theme of gratitude: