How To Teach Kids To Practice Kindness
Kindness is one of the most valuable traits we can hope for our children to learn. Acts of kindness not only spread happiness but also build self-esteem and reduce stress. Just like other developmental skills kindness is something we can teach and encourage, and of course we must lead by example. Integrating kindness into your daily routine using thoughtful activities will soon see it become second nature for the whole family. Here is a selection of ideas from Trunkaroo HQ to show kiddywinks how much fun kindness can be:
Good Deed Jar
Create a Good Deed Jar for your family and ask your child to record one act of kindness per day. Write the good deed onto a piece of paper, fold it up, and then pop it into the jar. These activities can include anything you have done for other people or that someone else has done for you. Include things like taking care of someone, giving someone a hug, helping with a task, visiting grandparents, or even simply giving a compliment. As the days pass by seeing the jar fill up with kindness will cultivate a feeling of pride for your kids. You can find a great example of a Kindness Jar on Toddler Approved.
Give A Present
Studies show that people who are grateful report higher levels of happiness and optimism, but gratitude is one of the trickiest concepts to teach children. We designed our ‘Gifts I’ve Made’ trunk to try to teach gratitude using art, science and fun handmade presents! Children will learn a new glue and oil pastel art technique to make amazing watercolour resist prints and then use them to decorate your very own flip animation journal. They can then wrap up their creations and gift them to someone special. The kind gesture of a handmade gift never fails to warm the heart!
Raise Money For Charity
Successfully contributing to a worthy cause can be an incredibly rewarding expression of kindness. Talk to your children about what causes they care about and choose an appropriate charity. For fundraising beginners a simple DIY project like baking or crafting are perfect to get started. These marshmallow pops by Truly Madly Kids are inexpensive and super easy to make! With no baking and only four ingredients this activity only requires a minimal amount of adult intervention. Your mini makers can try to sell their yummy creations at school, to neighbours and family members, which will also give them an opportunity to talk about their chosen cause to friends.
Send a Card
A homemade card can bring a smile to anyone’s face. Showing appreciation to friends and loved ones is a special way to spread the kindness bug. These printable ‘because’ card templates from Picklebums are such a cute way to kids to communicate their appreciation to teachers, neighbours, friends, family or anyone who makes an impact in their lives. Encourage your little ones to think of three reasons why the recipient is totally awesome and fill the card in accordingly. This is a great exercise to help children think about the kindness shown to them by others and how it makes them feel.
Help A Plant To Grow
Taking the time to gently nurture a plant is a wonderful way for kids to learn how to care for living things around them. There’s nothing quite like seeing something you’ve looked after flourish. The small daily acts of kindness shown towards a sprouting seedling demonstrate how caring gestures can grow into something much bigger- a thriving plant! Our ‘Growing Seeds’ trunk introduces children to gardening using STEM-inspired activities and projects.