Kindness Kits

Two years ago, I received an email from my five-year-old’s kindergarten teacher, applauding her kindness and inclusivity towards a child in her class who has special needs. Her teacher Sarah, an exceptionally kind person herself, was moved to tears when she saw a few students display kindness in the classroom. I remember her email said: You are raising such a kind and caring child.  You should be so proud! She has such a tender and kind heart and that’s exceptional to see in a five year old. It is such a blessing to work with her!”

I am so honored  to have received that email. As parents, my husband and I  really felt like it mattered more than an ace report card or any academic achievements. It’s a delicate balance but we always let our children know that even the best grades won’t look so good if they aren’t accompanied by a kind heart and a caring attitude. Too often, our focus on progress and achievement is so absolute that we forget to zoom out and remember that these little people will be the citizens of tomorrow. It’s as important to raise them with values of community and generosity as much as it is to give them a stellar education.

Kindness is easy to teach, and practice. It can be a word, a hug or a smile. It’s not just something to remember during the holidays but a virtue that becomes a part of a small  child’s personality. A great way of doing this is to make Kindness Kits. All you need is an envelope, a little box or a small pouch and a few things that can be sourced right at home. Teach your children that they can use their kindness kits to help a friend who’s lonely or sad, or just needs some cheering up. Here are a few examples of things to include that don’t cost much but can make for a valuable gesture:

  1. Smiley faces: Take a sheet of cardstock lying around at home and have your kids draw circles with a coin. Make as many smiley faces as you like and decorate them with glitter glue or markers. It’s bound to add a smile to someone’s face.
  2. Cartoon character Band-aids: It’s surprising how many boo-boos can be dealt with when you have a smiling Dora or a funny Minion staring at you straight off of a band-aid. It’s a kind gesture your kids will love handing  out as much as their friends will enjoy receiving them.
  3. Brightly colored  pencils: Who doesn’t love  a pencil with red hearts or clown faces? These are an  inexpensive way to learn to share and give.
  4. Bookmarks: Have your child make some colorful  bookmarks at home with cute sayings like Take Things One Page At a Time or Keep Calm and Read On. This is a  wonderful and useful gift that will live in the receiver’s heart – and their books – forever.