As well as strengthening our connections with others, research shows that kindness and giving makes us happier. And it’s contagious! If we're kind to someone, they're likely to be kind or kinder as a consequence.
This activity encourages everyday kindness by creating opportunities for kids to be kind to each other and the people they care about.
Kindness is something that often comes naturally, but it's good to focus on it too and have it a real whānau value.
Kōrero about kindness as part of what you notice - "she was kind when she helped with the door" or "that was a kind to share that with your sister." Point kindness as you see it in books or during screen time shows.
It's a great if your tamariki understand what kindness is. It's one of those words like 'respect' that we expect everyone knows, but sometimes our definitions differ. Kōrero around this at the dinner table, in the car - during relaxed times:
- What is ‘being kind’?
- What sorts of things can we do to be kind?
- What do people do for us that is helpful, kind or loving?
- How does it feel when someone is kind to us?
- How does it feel when we are kind?
Explain that kindness is like a muscle that gets stronger the more we use it, and that it tends to be contagious. If we smile at someone, they often smile back!
Other kind acts are the same. When we’re kind to others, we encourage them to be kind too. This Kindness Boomerang video will helps show students this flow-on affect.
Finally brainstorm and activate some cool ways your whānau can be kind:
- Create a whānau kindness sticker chart - any kind act your whānau do gets a sticker, ten stickers means a reward! - go to the museum, beach or park together, have a family movie - something you enjoy doing but acts as a 'treat'.
- Kōrero about how to be kind at school e.g. let a classmate know you saw someone be unkind to them and tell them you'll look out for them, make cards for any tamariki having a challenging time, tell your teacher what you appreciate them - leave them a secret note or some flowers from your garden.
- Think about who else you'd love to show some kindness to, and how you can do this.
- Create a Random Acts of Kindness Calendar for the week (or month) and proactively do something kind everyday.
- Leave compliments around the house for whānau to find - our cut out compliment sheet makes it easy.
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