Patience is not an easy “virtue.” I struggle with it! I’m sure you do too at times. Well, when you are a toddler, patience is just not in your vocabulary. I have explained patience as “waiting nicely” to my son. Does that mean he can actually put actions with those words?
Ask your child what patience means. Explain to them that patience means waiting calmly and nicely for something. It also means not over-reacting when a friend or family member makes you upset. Talk about how God is patient with us. We often make bad choices, but God loves us anyway. He does not over-react to our disobedience. He sent Jesus to die for our sins, and He loves us unconditionally. God is extremely patient with us! Since we strive to be more like Jesus and God, we need to work on being patient.
Ask your child:
- Can you remember a time that you felt impatient?
- Did being impatient help your situation? If you were impatient while waiting for something, did complaining about it make the time go faster? (That’s something I always ask my child! Is complaining helping the time go faster? No, it’s not!)
- What could you do differently? What actions could you take to show you are being patient?
Take time to praise your child when they are patient. Simply pointing out this good behavior is a great way to get your kid to realize what patience looks like. This is a work in progress at our house!
Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city. Proverbs 16:32
For this activity, you will need:
- a board game that requires at least 2+ players
Toddlers and young children get really excited to play games with mom and dad. They get even more excited when it is their turn! While you are playing the game, praise your child for being patient while they wait for their turn.