Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Week of Kindness... Five for Friday!

Kindness. Isn't it a lovely word?

We try to recognize and celebrate kindness every day, all year long, at our school.

But a week just for kindness? A chance to start each day asking, specifically, What can YOU do to be kind today? What an awesome opportunity!

Heart paper from Surfin' Through Second HERE on TpT
I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share about some of the kindness that has been celebrated around our campus this week as we participated in the Great Kindness Challenge!

I had the opportunity to meet Jill McManigal from Kids for Peace last year at a Character Education Workshop. My buddy, Barbara Gruener was there too--in full superhero garb! Drop by Barbara's blog, the Corner on Character HERE to read about the Great Kindness Challenge in Friendswood. And if you type "kindness" into the search box on Barbara's blog, you will need a second cup of coffee. I'm telling you: That blog is just filled with love and kindness and all things wonderful!

Jill is the perfect ambassador for The Great Kindness Challenge. Immediately after meeting her, I knew I wanted to join her in her desire to share the message that KINDNESS MATTERS! You can read more about the organization, Kids for Peace HERE, and about the Great Kindness challenge by clicking the picture below...

We emphasize one character trait each month through our character education program at our school. Then, any chance we get, teachers recognize when students demonstrate the identified trait and fill out a card commending the student. Knowing that The Great Kindness Challenge was coming, we chose Kindness as the word for January. An there were plenty of kind acts to celebrate this month!
Bucket Graphics by Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah Designs found HERE at TpT

At the beginning if this week, we brainstormed all of the possible acts of kindness we could accomplish--both at home and at school--during the week of the Great Kindness Challenge. The students worked in cooperative groups--but they were more than willing to share their ideas with other groups--such kindness! We made a bulletin board with some of our favorites.


On Wednesday, the Student Council members went to an assembly at the high school along with representatives from all of the other local elementary schools. It was yet another step in our Great Kindness Challenge! I couldn't get a substitute to cover my class while I accompanied my kids to the event. I shouldn't have worried; my principal quickly offered to attend the event with the kids. Such kindness! The Council members were excited to return with their Kindness Matters bracelets (Another gift from Kids for Peace!) and they had lots of new ideas for generating kindness at our school.

I am so fortunate to work at a school where character education is valued. Each month, the students decorate the doors to their classrooms with the character trait of the month. At the end of the month, the principal brings her "Character Sleuths" around the campus and they celebrate those classrooms that have participated. I love the recognition for kindness that is now displayed on our door!

The students in my room decorated our door with "mini lists" of the acts of kindness that they had accomplished throughout the week. (Some students had completed a lot more than ten!) I am having the best time reading them... enjoying their goodness and the way they express themselves. I am thinking it might be an act of kindness to let them know that "lended" is not a "common" word in English (although, statistically, we may be skewing the occurrence!) And I love their efforts to be kind to the lunch lady (Most said thank you--but a few added compliments!

frame by Ashley Hughes HERE in TpT


I just had to share this kindness that was sent in my direction. I have some wonderfully sweet and kind kiddos in my classroom this year. I almost cried when one of them handed me this (And I DID cry later when I read the precious note that he wrote!). Sigh. Such kindnesses are long remembered...

I'm starting to think of some more ways to recognize and celebrate kindness at our school. It really has made our classroom a happier place this week. Knowing Jill, she is probably already formulating plans for the Great Kindness Challenge for 2016!  It's a wonderful (and easy!) way to focus on increasing kind act, ending bullying, using kind words, and just recognizing the good in people. I hope you will check in when the activities are closer to finalized, and that you will join us next year!

In addition, you might want to check out Kids for Peace. There are lots of sweet ideas there too! (And you can read more about Jill). Just click on the link below to read more.

And, it's always fun to check in on Doodle Bugs' Five for Friday. Click below to return to the link-up.

Hoping your week ahead is filled with kindness!


  1. I cannot tell you how touched I am by your FIVE ... my heart is warmed and I'm jumping for JOY that kindness is alive and well in 6th grade, too!!! Thank you for your leadership and your example. WoW ... blessed are the future leaders under your wing, my friend.

    Jill and I are planning a one-of-a-KINE reunion at the end of June/early July in Long Beach, so get ready to road trip!

  2. I love #2! Terrific idea. We'll be reading Wonder in the 7th grade in April and this would be a terrific way to bring it to life. So glad I found your post--and your blog :)

  3. You very lucky to be in a school where character education is a priority and your students are lucky to have a teacher who helps them navigate this social world!

    Hugs to you lady!

    Crisscross Applesauce in First Grade


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