5 Simple Ways to Teach Your Kids About Love

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I grew up in a family of “I Love you’s.”

Before bed, “Night, I love you!” Before school, “I love you!” Getting off of the phone, ” Love you!”

In fact, I still say it to my parents every time I get off the phone with them. And now, my husband and I tell our kids several times daily.

But do they have any idea what we’re saying? At 2 and 4 years old, are my children able to comprehend what those words mean?

I’m going to take a guess here and say they probably don’t.

We know that every move we’ve made since becoming parents is out of love for our children. But they don’t know that. They know we feed them, clothe them, bathe them, AND do everything else for them. But to them, that is our role in life. To take care of them.

So how do you teach young children about love? I’m most certainly not an expert, but I do know what has been working for us.

Quite simply, we show them.

To make a child feel loved, I’d venture to guess, it doesn’t take much. Here are 5 simple ways to teach your kids about Love.

5 Simple Ways to Teach Your Kids About Love

1. Make eye contact with them when they’re speaking. We are all busy. We have important things to ask Google. But we also have these impressionable little people around that have an important story to tell us about Darth Vader and Snow White’s tea party. Drop everything, make eye contact, and listen. Better yet, ask questions.

2. Affection. Hugs and kisses are one of the best ways to show love to a little one. Only if they like them of course.

5 simple ways to teach your kids about love

My daughter went through a phase where she would “eat” my kisses because she didn’t want them. When I stopped kissing her, then she started giving me kisses. I suspect that may have something to do with her prolonging bedtime, but I’m getting kisses from my girl, I’ll take it! My son has always loved giving kisses. And seriously, there is nothing cuter than a proud, slobbery kiss from a two year old.

3. Play their games. The sweetest words for me to hear are, “Mommy, can you come play with me?” And my sweet girl lights up every single time I respond with an enthusiastic “Sure!” She rarely lets me actually “play,” but I get the honor of watching her play her favorite game. And I can always tell by the tiny smirk on her face that she is having a fantastic time with mommy.

4. Think about others. My daughter has been all about herself lately and it has been driving me bonkers. Sometimes I get concerned about it, then I remember she’s four. Each time she presents with a selfish attitude, whether it’s about a toy or activity, I ask her to stop and think about the other person (baby brother) involved. I ask her how she would feel if she was that person. Sometimes she comes around, but it is something we’re still working on. Either way, I think it’s an important one to mention. I always tell her that it is good to think about herself, because she is important. But we also want to think about others. If they’re upset about something, then perhaps we can help them somehow. (Give your brother back his toy!!)

5. Respect and affection for your spouse. It’s ok to hug or kiss your spouse in front of your kids. My husband and I have even had disagreements in front of them. But we always keep it respectful. It’s our job to show them what a healthy relationship looks like. As we all know, kids notice everything.

5 Simple Ways to Teach Your Kids About Love

These are just a few things we do to show our kids we love them. And one day soon, they’ll understand what those three little words mean.

How do you show your kids you love them?

February 2, 2016
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23 Comments

  • Reply Alana

    Love this! Pinned, stumbled, and scheduling. GREAT post!!!!

    February 2, 2016 at 7:20 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Aw, thank you so much!!

      February 2, 2016 at 7:35 am
  • Reply Traci@tracesoffaith

    Simple and excellent advice! I try to do all of these and also when she’s telling one of her MANY stories, I tell myself to listen because it’s important in her little world. I give myself pep talks a lot and that seems to help. Ha!

    February 2, 2016 at 8:01 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Pep talks to yourself is a great idea! Because yes, their important stories can go on and on…

      February 2, 2016 at 8:42 am
  • Reply Tessa

    Love these! All such valid points and ideas that most people don’t really think about on a day-to-day basis. Especially making eye contact and showing affection to your spouse (or even others). Pinning this 🙂

    February 2, 2016 at 8:26 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Thank you Tessa!! Eye contact with the little ones go a long way!

      February 2, 2016 at 8:43 am
  • Reply Christine - The Choosy Mommy

    We are just like you in that we say I love you all of the time. However, I am not a really touchy-feeling-cuddly kind of person so my kids don’t see a lot of affection between my husband and I. I need to “show” this more with him too. But I do give my kids lots of hugs and kisses and my 3 year old really enjoys Eskimo kisses (with your nose!)

    February 2, 2016 at 1:38 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Yes!! My 2 year old loves Eskimo kisses!!

      February 2, 2016 at 2:00 pm
      • Reply JMG

        And butterfly kisses with your eyelashes.

        February 4, 2016 at 8:10 am
  • Reply Charlie@Seattle Trekker

    I agree, you don’t tech love, you model it, demonstrate it, share it…It takes a while and it comes back through those same channels.

    February 2, 2016 at 2:37 pm
  • Reply Meredith@MommyAtoZ

    All good tips! My husband and I try to always practice “clean” fighting, because conflict is part of relationships. And I love kissing and snuggling with my little ones. I just need to remember when they ask me to play with them, that it’s OK to put down what I’m doing that’s making me so “busy” and just go for it! Great post!

    February 2, 2016 at 5:49 pm
  • Reply Tiffany

    This is such a perfect post. I love all of your suggestions and I totally feel you about 4 being an “all about me stage” It sounds like you are doing all the right things. My son always says, “Mommy I love you 100!” (Because that’s the biggest number he can think of right now…:)

    February 2, 2016 at 7:14 pm
  • Reply CourtneyLynne

    Awwwww we are the same!!! I sometimes get worried I say I love you too much lol… But then I realize that’s just silly 😉

    February 3, 2016 at 6:37 am
  • Reply DebbieZ

    Beautiful! Such great suggestions. I think it’s so important for the little ones to see love and affection as well as hear the words ‘I love you.’ It’s easy to give hugs! I will be giving those till my little guy is grown, for sure. lol

    February 3, 2016 at 8:59 am
  • Reply Jen

    Yes! Yes! I say I love you all of the time, but we MUST show them we love them!

    February 3, 2016 at 10:36 am
  • Reply Andria

    Love, love, love this post! Will be sharing for sure. We sometimes forget that even though we say it we still have to show it when it comes to love 🙂

    February 3, 2016 at 12:06 pm
  • Reply twitchetts.com

    This is beautiful! I love that you stop and look them in the eyes when they talk. And cuddles never ever ever too many of those!!

    February 3, 2016 at 2:15 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Thank you so much! Eye contact makes such a huge difference. And agreed, never too many cuddles!

      February 3, 2016 at 2:32 pm
  • Reply Hil

    This is so cute! I don’t know if I am teaching my kids the right way, but I notice when my 1 year old and almost three year old are alone, they snuggle and I see my daughter hugging and kissing her brother and telling him she loves him. Yesterday he even went up to her when she was crying to give her a kiss on the cheek and hug (he’s 13 months) just about melted my heart!!

    You should come link up at our Bloggers Spotlight party on Thursday night, we pin everything to our group board and have two separate link-ups, one for posts and one devoted to pins so you get even more exposure!
    http://www.raisingfairiesandknights.com/category/bloggers-spotlight/

    February 3, 2016 at 6:58 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Awww, that is so sweet!! I love it when my kiddos give each other hugs and kisses!
      Thank you!! I will, sounds great!!

      February 3, 2016 at 7:00 pm
  • Reply Sarah Nenni Daher

    “…important story to tell us about Darth Vader and Snow White’s tea party.’ I thought it was just me who got those exclusive invitations…

    I really love this article and the honesty in number 5 – we always highlight that we’re having a “respectful disagreement.” She’s taken that to preschool now! 🙂

    February 3, 2016 at 8:42 pm
  • Reply JMG

    Great thoughts and photos and fun comments too. Have you read “The Five Love Languages”? It has helpful ideas and the main idea for children is to give them all five methods of love: Touch, Special Time, Gifts, Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service. Keep in mind that Gifts can simply be a pretty rock or a flower picked from the garden or a little sticker.

    February 4, 2016 at 8:16 am
  • Reply Mariya

    So true!! I love it!! I do need to hug and kiss my hubby infront of my daughter more, I feel like we both focus on her too too much when she is with us ))

    February 13, 2016 at 12:58 pm
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