With the celebration of chocolate, hearts, and flowers otherwise known as Valentines Day, we celebrate acts of kindness and respect. This month we focus on building self in a way that is caring, compassionate, and empathetic to our family, friends, and neighbors. We will celebrate kind deeds through art projects, explore the meaning of kindness, and putting our knowledge in action.
RAK – Random Acts of Kindness is being celebrated February 9-15, 2015. It’s a time to step out of your normal routine and attempt a new random act of kindness. Watch 2014 Kid Kind Winners below!
This month, Kids’ Camp will work on developing:
Asset #33: Interpersonal Competence – young person has empathy, sensitivity, and friendship skills.
Also developing #26: Caring,. #37: Personal Power, and #17 Creative Activities.
What does it mean to help another person?
How can one demonstrate acts of kindness?
Time Frame: 5-6 Lessons/ Days
Materials Needed: Sometimes I HELP; Sometimes I NEED help handout, 4 – 6 pairs of shoes, “How to Heal a Broken Wing” by Bob Graham, beach ball, two clear glasses, blue food coloring, and bleach, rocks, paint, sharpies, Construction Paper, Crayons, Poster Paper, Markers
These activities and projects can be facilitated anytime throughout the year.
Activity 1 – Everyone is a Helper
- Explores ways to use your “strengths” to help one who is “struggling.”
Activity 2 – A Listening Practice
- A mindful practice
Activity 3 – Put Yourself in Someone Else’s Shoes
- Explores ways to be more understanding of those around us.
Activity 4 – Waves of Kindness
- Explores ways to care for those around us.
Activity 5 & 6 – The Art of Kindness
- Bring awareness through ART!
Extensional/ Ongoing Projects:
Below is a list of books that could aide you in completing Kindness and Caring Unit.
Books About Kindness
1. Please Don’t Tease Tootsie by Margaret Chamberlain
2008. Grades PreK-2.
In rhyming text the narrator entreats readers not to “tease Tootsie” or “madden Mutley” or “disturb Dixie” but rather to show their animal companions kindness. A good springboard for discussing kindness to animals.
2. Kindness is Cooler, Mrs. Ruler by Margery Cuyler
2007. Grades K-2.
When her class gets a little out of hand, Mrs. Ruler guides her students in learning to do small acts of kindness at home, at school, and in their communities.
3. I See Kindness Everywhere by Shelley Frost
2010. Grades PreK-2.
A little girl gives thanks for all the kindness around her, from the people who made her socks, to those who grew her berries.
4. Good People Everywhere by Lynea Gillen
2012. Grades PreK-2.
“Today, millions and millions of people will do very good things.” This lovely book offers numerous reminders of all the people around us doing good things, from the farmers who grow our food to someone helping a friend in need.
5. Nico and Lola: Kindness Shared Between a Dog and a Boy by Meggan Hill
2009. Grades Pre-K-2.
When Nico takes care of his aunt’s dog, he must find ways to be kind to her, and Lola shows kindness in return.
6. Horton Hears a Who by Dr. Seuss
1954. Grades K-4.
A city of Whos on a speck of dust are threatened with destruction until the smallest Who of all helps convince Horton’s friends that Whos really exist.
7. The Kindness Quilt by Nancy Elizabeth Smith
2006. Grades PreK-2.
When Minna’s teacher, Mrs. Bloom, reads the Aesop’s Fable about a mouse and lion being kind to each other, the class is inspired to create a Kindness Project. When Minna presents her project — a kindness quilt — the idea spreads to the entire school, until entire walls are taken up with examples of kindness.
8. Fly Free! by Roseanne Thong
2010. Grades K-3.
“Flyfree, flyfree, in the sky so blue. When you do a good deed, it will come back to you!”
Mai regularly feeds the caged birds at the temple. Her wish to free the birds, and her kindness to another young girl lead to a circle of good deeds that result in freedom for the birds and a realization of the power of kindness and our universal connection.
9. Hunter and His Dog by Brian Wildsmith
2008. Grades K-3.
A hunting dog can’t bear to retrieve the wounded ducks his guardian shoots, so he brings the hunter sticks and takes the ducks to an island to heal.
10. Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson
2012. Grades K-3.
New girl, Maya, comes to school and tries to befriend Chloe. But Maya’s clothes are shabby, and Chloe continually rejects Maya’s attempts at friendship. When Ms. Albert teaches a lesson about kindness, Chloe realizes she has been cruel to Maya. But Maya’s family has moved away, and Chloe is left feeling shame and sorrow that she will never have a chance to show Maya kindness.
Character Building and Friendship Books
- Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon – This is a sweet read about a little girl who might just be a bit different from others, but that doesn’t stop her from seeing her faults as something pretty spectacular! This little cutie knows how to take lemons and make lemonade!
- My Friend Is Sad – Mo Willems is just awesome. These Elephant and Piggie books are a HUGE hit with our kiddos.
- Chrysanthemum – I LOVE THIS BOOK! It is a great book for teaching how our words can really hurt others. We always do the “crumpled heart” lesson with this book and leave the heart hanging up all year long.
- Frog and Toad Are Friends – Toad does headstands, bangs his head against a wall, and paces on the front porch ALL to think of a story to help his friend Frog feel better. Great example of what we do for the ones we love!
- The Pout Pout Fish – LOVE!!!! I love the catchy rhythm of this book. The Pout Pout Fish is a pretty sullen fellow until he meets the RIGHT friend…and his whole attitude changes!
The Boy Who Wouldn’t Share – What K kiddo doesn’t need a lesson on sharing? 😉
- A Visitor for Bear – Bear thinks he doesn’t need anyone to make him happy, until a little mouse pops up in his cozy home. After driving Bear nuts, the mouse wiggles his way right into bears heart and an unexpected friendship begins!
- The Selfish Crocodile – It doesn’t take long for Crocodile to realize he shouldn’t always put himself first!
- Ruthie and the (Not So) Teeny Tiny Lie – Ruthie comes to realize that little lies can make your heart pretty heavy. She finds that truth will set her free!
For more information visit: randomactsofkindnessweek.org