There’s a favorite children’s song “If you’re happy and you know it” that asks toddlers to perform certain actions to show they are happy. But do they really know what that means?
Happiness is a feeling that’s comprised of many other feelings including contentment, joy, and a sense of well-being. And, oh yes, it’s loaded with smiles!
Sometimes it is expressed spontaneously through exuberant shrieks and sometimes it is evidenced by the tiniest smile of satisfaction. Whatever manner of display, it is always treasured. So how do we encourage those golden flickers of sunshine in our children? Well, there are some easy steps we can take to create “happy children”.
A very simple first step actually involves the sunshine. Serotonin, known as the happy hormone because it regulates our moods, is released when we are exposed to sunlight. So playing and walking together outside helps create happiness in everyone!
Next, you can create an environment where love and understanding abound. A sense of security and acceptance goes a long way in developing a child’s lifelong emotional stability which produces happiness.
Finally, and maybe a little obvious, is plenty of playtime. Children learn through play, they socialize through play and they get exercise through play. All of this adds up to a sense of accomplishment and contentment, but most of all happiness.
Sooo, if you’re happy, you will know it. Clap your hands!