Kids & Kindness: How to Create a Culture of Kindness in Your Home or School by Ann Marie Gardinier Halstead
In my role as children’s author and bullying-prevention advocate, I’ve spent a lot of time in schools talking to kids and teachers about bullying and kindness. Creating a culture of kindness is an excellent way to address bullying. My own kids know that as much as I value their grades and their involvement in extracurricular activities, above all, I want them to be kind and compassionate humans. I believe it’s important that we all work to cultivate a culture of kindness, in our homes, our schools and our communities. Here’s how to begin:
- Start early. It's never too early to teach kids about kindness and empathy.
- When someone has been kind to you, let your kids/students know how it made you feel.
- Discuss kindness at dinner each night. Ask your kids: Who were you kind to today? Who was kind to you?
- “Catch” kids being kind. Make a big deal out of it. Let them know how much you value kindness.
- Teach your kids about bucket filling. Encourage them to be bucket fillers.
- If your school doesn’t have a Buddy Bench, make it a community project to build one for the playground.
- Recognize kind kids at school. Reiterate the importance of kindness in the cafeteria, in the classroom, on the bus, on the playground, in the hallway.
Let's send the message that “kindness is cool!”
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