YOU, YOUR CHILDREN AND YOUR SCHOOL: Be intentional when it comes to kindness | Education

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is upon us, often leaving us in search of time with loved ones or the “perfect” gift. At West Elementary, our students recently started a unit in our social / emotional program, Second Step, on the power of kindness.

Our students have learned that a kind act is being intentional with words and / or actions to do something kind for someone else. Together, we explored how others feel when they receive kindness and how sharing kindness makes us feel.

Teaching and practicing kindness takes place throughout the year in our building through the use of picture books, model acts of kindness, and class discussions. Being nice is also one of our school-wide “rules of being”. People who regularly practice kindness often seem happier, have better self-esteem, and have more meaningful relationships with their peers. They can also show a greater sense of appreciation for the people around them, as well as for the things they have.

Here are some easy ways to teach and / or share kindness with your family:

  • Use picture books to foster a discussion about what kindness can look, sound, and feel.
  • Create a daily family kindness challenge with simple ideas and check out at the end of the day how the act of kindness went.
  • Discuss the kinds of acts you and your child witnessed throughout the day and explore how this made the person feel.
  • Show your appreciation or thanks when kindness is shared with you.

As we begin this holiday season, we invite you and your families to join us at West Elementary School in being intentional with your time and gifts to show kindness to those around you. Remember that cuteness is a gift anyone can afford.

Jessica Bouta is a Certified School Counselor at West Elementary School. You, Your Kids & School is a bimonthly column of Hutchinson Public Schools.

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