Creativity

How I Love To Teach My Kids Appreciation

Delaney Ruston, MD
July 5, 2022
The word awe in colorful blocks

Let me explain two appreciation categories — one is the gratitude type. You can be really appreciative, i.e., grateful, that someone helped you move from one apartment to another or they watched your child while you did some errands. A teen might appreciate that their sister took the blame for the messy kitchen even though they had a part in it. 

The other category of appreciation is awe and amazement. You have a great appreciation, i.e., awe, for someone's ability to do something well. Awe could be related to something big such as someone who uses their organizational skills to pull off an event that feeds hundreds of at-risk youth. Or it could be something smaller, such as appreciating a friend’s ability to get people laughing with their clever storytelling. 

Today, I’m focusing on this awe-form of appreciation and how we can foster it in our kids. I believe one key way to do this is to get them to try new things. I notice my sense of awe is much greater for something I have tried myself. 

Below are some examples of the power of experience as an appreciation builder.

Join
442
others who have made the pledge!
Thank you for making the pledge!
Please try again
Book page button

Available now - Parenting in the Screen Age, from Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD

Order Here
Find A screening Button

Find a Screening - Find a screening of our movies in your local community

Learn More
Screenagers Podcast

Screenagers Podcast - Join Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD for the latest Podcast

Learn More
Book page button

Available now - Parenting in the Screen Age, from Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD

Learn More
Host a Screening Button

Community Screenings - Learn more about hosting your own Screenagers community screening event!

Learn More

I am in jaw-dropping awe when I watch gymnasts. Starting at 8-years old until I was eleven, I did gymnastics at the YMCA. I loved doing things like back walkovers and one-handed cartwheels. At the same time, many things scared the Dickens out of me. For example, when we did the vault, more times than not, I peeled away to the bathroom to hide out for a while. Another thing that didn’t scare me but I could never master was a press to handstand. 

Through my own experiences and struggles with gymnastics, I gained a deep appreciation for the sport. I wanted to build that same appreciation in my kids, so I signed them up for tumbling and gymnastic classes.

My kids’ decided to do gymnastics for a relatively short time, but I am convinced that it was plenty to boost a deeper appreciation of the sport. As kids they really enjoyed our family outings to go see gymnastic meets at the University of Washington. Backflip on a balance beam — amazing! 

Think about appreciating art. Do you agree that part of why we find ourselves marveling at an intricate realistic painting is that we’ve tried painting as kids? 

Or let’s take a beautifully frosted cake. It is when we have tried frosting cakes do we truly appreciate the skill involved. It takes immense skill and patience. I have never come close to anything a professional baker can do. The cake crumbs always get into the frosting, the amount of frosting is never evenly spread, and my strokes never look right. 

Host a Screening Button

Community Screenings - Learn more about hosting your own Screenagers community screening event!

Learn More
Find A screening Button

Find a Screening - Find a screening of our movies in your local community

Learn More
Screenagers Podcast

Screenagers Podcast - Join Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD for the latest Podcast

Learn More
Book page button

Available now - Parenting in the Screen Age, from Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD

Learn More
Host a Screening Button

Community Screenings - Learn more about hosting your own Screenagers community screening event!

Learn More

I am certain that all my mishaps with frosting help explain why one of my favorite delights is oohing and awing at cakes whenever I see them — be it at my local grocery store or a bakery I pass. 

Summertime is a wonderful time to help increase feelings of awe in our kids by  providing them opportunities to try new things, even the littlest of things.

Questions to get the conversations started:

  1. When was the last time we experienced a feeling of WOW when we saw someone do something? 
  2. In what ways do any of our  friends or family members leave us awestruck and how does it relate to our having tried, or not,  whatever it is we are in awe of?
  3. Let's come up with a list of 3 new activities to try this week and see how it deepens our appreciation. Some examples might be tossing a frisbee at outside targets to appreciate disc golf. Or making a new type of vegetable dish to appreciate the work of chefs even more. How about doing a few minutes of stand-up comedy to appreciate those masters of laughter — a talent of which I am in deep awe!
Book page button

Available now - Parenting in the Screen Age, from Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD

Order Here
Find A screening Button

Find a Screening - Find a screening of our movies in your local community

Learn More
Screenagers Podcast

Screenagers Podcast - Join Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD for the latest Podcast

Learn More
Book page button

Available now - Parenting in the Screen Age, from Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD

Learn More
Host a Screening Button

Community Screenings - Learn more about hosting your own Screenagers community screening event!

Learn More
Parenting In The Screen Age Book Cover

Free Book Preview - Download a free preview of "Parenting In The Screen Age" by Delaney Ruston, MD

Learn More

Join Today - Members can screen and view our movies year-round, access new lesson plans, resources and much more!

Learn More
Host a Screening Button

Community Screenings - Learn more about hosting your own Screenagers community screening event!

Learn More
Find A screening Button

Find a Screening - Find a screening of our movies in your local community

Learn More
Screenagers Podcast

Screenagers Podcast - Join Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD for the latest Podcast

Learn More
Book page button

Available now - Parenting in the Screen Age, from Screenagers filmmaker Delaney Ruston MD

Learn More
Host a Screening Button

Community Screenings - Learn more about hosting your own Screenagers community screening event!

Learn More
Parenting In The Screen Age Book Cover

Free Book Preview - Download a free preview of "Parenting In The Screen Age" by Delaney Ruston, MD

Learn More

Join Today - Members can screen and view our movies year-round, access new lesson plans, resources and much more!

Learn More
Creativity

How I Love To Teach My Kids Appreciation

Delaney Ruston, MD
July 5, 2022
The word awe in colorful blocks

Let me explain two appreciation categories — one is the gratitude type. You can be really appreciative, i.e., grateful, that someone helped you move from one apartment to another or they watched your child while you did some errands. A teen might appreciate that their sister took the blame for the messy kitchen even though they had a part in it. 

The other category of appreciation is awe and amazement. You have a great appreciation, i.e., awe, for someone's ability to do something well. Awe could be related to something big such as someone who uses their organizational skills to pull off an event that feeds hundreds of at-risk youth. Or it could be something smaller, such as appreciating a friend’s ability to get people laughing with their clever storytelling. 

Today, I’m focusing on this awe-form of appreciation and how we can foster it in our kids. I believe one key way to do this is to get them to try new things. I notice my sense of awe is much greater for something I have tried myself. 

Below are some examples of the power of experience as an appreciation builder.

More Like This

4 Food Moves To Do With Your Kids
February 7, 2023
Creativity

4 Food Moves To Do With Your Kids

Cooking creates self-confidence, self-efficacy and is a great offline activity. Today, I have some food moves to help inspire your child to up their cooking game — whether they are naysayers or Chez Panisse wannabes, I think they’ll like these.

READ MORE >
Do This One Thing For Immediate Closeness Over The Holidays
December 20, 2022
Creativity

Do This One Thing For Immediate Closeness Over The Holidays

Plain and simple, there is one thing I recommend doing during the holidays for love and laughter. Bring out old photo albums and put them in a high-trafficked spot in your home — be it the kitchen table or a table in a living room. I predict we won’t have photo albums in the future, but we do right now.

READ MORE >
My Big List of Screen-Free Holiday Gifts
December 6, 2022
Creativity

My Big List of Screen-Free Holiday Gifts

We all know tech gifts are a big part of the holiday season, but as always, I offer tech-free ideas today. I am not putting down tech — many wonderful tech gifts will get exchanged this year, but I hope you will find this tech-free list to be a bit helpful.

READ MORE >

parenting in the screen age

for more like this, DR. DELANEY RUSTON'S NEW BOOK, PARENTING IN THE SCREEN AGE, IS THE DEFINITIVE GUIDE FOR TODAY’S PARENTS. WITH INSIGHTS ON SCREEN TIME FROM RESEARCHERS, INPUT FROM KIDS & TEENS, THIS BOOK IS PACKED WITH SOLUTIONS FOR HOW TO START AND SUSTAIN PRODUCTIVE FAMILY TALKS ABOUT TECHNOLOGY AND IT’S IMPACT ON OUR MENTAL WELLBEING.  

ORDER HERE
Parenting in the Screen Age book cover