Teaching Kids Kindness

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The kids in our care are still developing parts of their character, that will go on to shape how they treat others and how they view themselves.  As teachers and parents we have a unique and powerful role to help shape and mold the best parts of our students and kids.  One lesson I truly love to teach to my students is  kindness.  There is no better feeling in the world then knowing that your kindness has left someone else better off, and kids need to experience this amazing feeling.  There are lots of opportunities for children to laugh at their peers’ mistakes or call each other silly names, but giving them meaningful interactions with kindness is something they will forever remember.  Here are some of the ways I enjoy teaching kids kindness.


 

Cotton vs. Sandpaper Words

This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
I love this activity! It gives kids a tactile way of talking about the impact of their words.  The first step is to have students describe how cotton feels (ex. soft, fluffy, gentle, etc).  Then discuss how some words can feel this way too (such as compliments, manners, etc).  List words and phrases that would feel like cotton.  Then, do the same process with sandpaper.  Compare the rough feeling with words that hurt.  (For a more detailed explanation visit: The School Counselor Kind)

 

Linking Friendship Traits

This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
An important impact of kindness is the long-lasting effect it has on friendship skills.  For this activity, have students fold up a piece of paper about 4 or 5 times.  Students then trace the figure of a person as seen above.  However, you could also trace out hearts, stars or anything else that symbolizes friendship.  Students cut out their tracings and should be left with a linking chain.  On each part of the link, students should brainstorm ways to be a kind friend to their classmates.  You can dress these up and display them in your class as a visual reminder. (Taken from Gift of Curiosity)

 

Talk About Accepting Diversity

This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
Accepting diversity and differences go hand in hand with being kind.  It’s important for children to know that their kindness should not be restricted to certain people or groups.  All people deserve kindness, and kids are never to young to discuss diversity.  They see it all around them in their world, television screens and classrooms and it’s important that they know to show kindness to all.  This playdough lesson is great for very young kids (perhaps grades K-2).  (Taken from Bonbon Break)

 

Provide Prompts & Examples

It’s so important to encourage kids to have meaningful conversations while being considerate. By our very nature, we have disagreements with others.  Kids are no exception.  So, it’s essential to let kids know that they can disagree in a way that is still polite and kind, while voicing their opinions. Children may not have the right vocabulary or transitions to express their thoughts, so it’s our job to equip them with it.  The anchor charts below provide some wonderful sentence starters, that allow students to express themselves, while remaining positive.

This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
(Taken from Pinterest)
This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
(Taken from Teacher’s Notebook)

 

Read to Inspire

Many children’s books beautifully capture acts of kindness, and can serve as a great benefit and example for your students or kids.  Take a look at some of my favorite books about kindness:

This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
A story about a young boy who is used to being invisible. However, when someone is mistreated, he shines in a big way through a wonderful act of kindness. (Found on Amazon)
This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
I love love love this book. It’s a guide for kids about “filling buckets”. How exactly do the buckets get filled? Why, with nice words and helpful acts of course! (Taken from Amazon)
This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
This is a book about a boy who has an enemy. His father teaches him how to deal with his enemy by creating an enemy pie. Little does he know, this enemy pie will actually encourage him to make a new unexpected friend. (Found on Amazon)
This is a wonderful list of lesson ideas for teaching kids kindness. Try out these unique lesson activities, complete with recommended books on kindness.
What is so special about this book, is that it shows the ripple effect that kindness can have. So many things are set in motion, based on one nice act. This is a great lesson in kindness and paying it forward :). (Found on Amazon).

Here’s to hoping for a kinder world.  

 

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