Ring in the New Year with these easy and fun New Year’s resolution ideas for kids. Help your kids set positive goals they can keep year-round to instill healthy habits.
New Year Resolution for Kids #1: Learn to read or improve reading ability
Set aside 5-10 minutes a day practicing reading with your child. Books open doors to exciting adventures and new worlds. Expand your child’s imagination with a short storytime each day. Personalized children’s storybooks are especially ideal to capture your child’s attention, as they feature your child’s name throughout the story!
New Year Resolution #2: Eat less junk food
Kids love snacking on candy. But this New Year’s resolution for kids will help them develop healthier eating habits and focus on quality versus quantity. Schedule “snack” days during the week, when kids are allowed special treats. Make the treat a quality piece of chocolate rather than a whole bag of gummy bears. Instead of potato chips, try sweet potato crackers or veggie chips for a healthier alternative. Offer fruit for dessert at dinner time. If you are making a special sweet treat like brownies, try incorporating avocado or black beans and use less sugar and coco powder.
New Year Resolution #3: Master a childhood milestone
Set to accomplish a big childhood milestone this year such as learning to walk, sleeping through the night, or letting go of a bad habit like thumb sucking. Remember to be patient—achieving this goal can happen gradually throughout the year. If your child is trying to sleep through the night, keep a sleep journal and reward your child with a gold sticker for each hour gained in sleep.
New Year Resolution #4: Help around the house with chores
When kids help around the house, they learn important life skills like responsibility and working hard. Assign your child one task at the beginning of the year, such as taking out the garbage or setting the dinner table. Even your youngest kids can help out. Toddlers can take napkins to the table or throw food scraps in the garbage when you are making dinner.
New Year Resolution #5: Exchange screen time with family time
Make time each day for family time. Both parents and kids should put down their electronic devices (iPads, phones, computers, etc.) and spend quality time together, whether it’s playing a game, talking about your day, or reading.
New Year Resolution #6: Learn to give thanks and practice gratitude
Teach your kids to say “please” and “thank you” when asking or receiving something. This is a good habit that toddlers can begin adopting and teaches kids about politeness and kindness. Parents can model this behavior daily, so kids can observe the practice and pick up the mannerism. To continue practicing gratitude, have your child make gift lists for other family members and discuss what the other person might like. This encourages the child to think about others and emphasizes giving. A personalized storybook such as Thank You, Lord, For Everything also encourages kids to count their blessings and remember all they have to be thankful for. Kids can also make happy new year cards for family, with messages of thanks and new year wishes.
New Year Resolution #7: Be a leader
Boost your child’s self-esteem and confidence by encouraging them to be more of a leader throughout the year. While leadership seems like a big concept for young kids, there are many small things your child can do to acquire leadership qualities and meet this New Year’s resolution. Make sure your child is involved in family decisions, whether you are planning a dinner, the next family activity, or deciding what movie to watch. Your child can also lead the family in a vote, to decide based on majority rule.
Encourage your child to develop communication skills and find their voice. Every day after school, sit with your child at the kitchen table and ask about their day. As they discuss their passions, their dislikes, and narrate their day, they will learn how to communicate more effectively and will become confident discussing different topics. Eventually, they may initiate conversation and learn how to lead a discussion.
Another way to help kids develop leadership skills is to have them decide what goes in their own lunch, or have older kids make their own sandwich. This simple way to start the day helps promote decision-making and kicks off the morning with a confidence boost.
Nurture your child’s leadership skills and help them flourish into strong and self-assured adults.