Making kindness a lifelong habit starts in childhood. Adults who come in contact with children regularly, like teachers, coaches, and librarians, have a tremendous amount of influence on kids. Setting a good example and leading with kindness can change the course of a child’s life and positively affect those around them. So, where to begin? Using the excellent example set by Mrs. Richardson and her students, below are some tips on getting kids excited about kindness!
1. Get crafty
Mrs. Richardson, a teacher in Tallahassee, Florida, made a plan to get her students involved in random acts of kindness. How? By using the students’ passion for crafts!
“I started out by researching crafts that would benefit local organizations and reaching out to leaders to find out if they were open to the idea,” Mrs. Richardson said. After hearing feedback from various organizations and getting funding from Random Acts, she gathered supplies. Using paint and a little creativity, the students decorated gardening pots for City Walk Urban Mission and painted stones for their school’s garden. But they didn’t stop there! The students also made blankets for the Leon County Humane Society.
Keep kids engaged in a kindness activity by using creativity! Homemade crafts are a great way to get even the youngest kids involved in kindness.
2. Make it personal
Not only did the students create art for kindness, but they also had the opportunity to choose other kindness projects as well. “I wanted a variety of organizations that would help students find a cause that spoke to them,” Mrs. Richardson said. Her students could follow their hearts and pick what they were passionate about. They created gift bags for pediatric patients through Ronald McDonald House Charities, sorted hygiene items for The Backpack Project, and recorded children’s books for Kids Incorporated of the Big Bend.
When children have choices, they tend to participate more enthusiastically in a project. Look for different local organizations that could use a little kindness and present kids with options!
3. Have fun!
Not only is kindness good for the world, it can also be fun! “It was heartwarming to hear how much fun the students had creating projects to serve others,” Mrs. Richardson said at the end of the various kindness projects. Let the act of creation and kindness bring you joy, just like it did for Mrs. Richardson, her students, and all the people (and animals) they helped!