How to Be Kind
- Engage in a conversation about the three types of kindness, and how to practice each type of kindness
- Watch a video about kind actions, and reflect on ways they can demonstrate kindness towards themselves, others, and the planet
When educators integrate the teaching of kindness in classrooms, and make these practices critical to their daily work, research shows a positive impact on students’ wellbeing, sense of community and belonging, and relationships with each other. A positive school climate is also associated with increased academic performance, reduced bullying, and enhanced teacher retention. Thus, educators should encourage students to practice self-care and kindness to identify ways they can show kindness towards themselves, others, and the world around them.
To learn more about these skills, and how they promote students’ healthy growth and the development of empathy, please check out our Empathy Framework.
- Engage students in a conversation about kindness. You might ask:
• What does kindness mean to you?
• What are some examples of kind actions?
• Who can we show kindness to?
- Introduce students to the three types of kindness. You might explain: “Today, we’ll explore three types of kindness: 1) to ourselves, 2) to others, and 3) to the world around us. How do you think we can practice each type of kindness?”
- Create a list of students’ ideas and use the examples below (and on this poster) as inspiration:
• Kindness to yourself, and being patient and compassionate with yourself. For example, doing something fun or relaxing, celebrating your accomplishments, or asking others for help when you need support.
• Kindness to others, and treating them with respect and care. For example, writing a note to say “thank you”, inviting someone to sit or play with you, or posting a positive comment for someone online.
• Kindness to the world, and taking steps to protect and restore nature. For example, picking up litter on the ground, giving water to plants, or reusing or recycling an item instead of throwing it into the trash.
- Then, watch the video below with your class, which describes each type of kindness. The video also includes opportunities for students to reflect on ways they can demonstrate kindness towards themselves, others, and the planet.
- After watching the video, invite students to share their reflections by asking the questions below:
• What are some ways that you already practice self-care, or something that you want to try doing in the future?
• What were some ways that students were kind to others in the video? What’s your plan for showing kindness to others this week?
• Why is it important to be kind to the planet? How will you show kindness to the environment?
If students in both classes have individual devices (e.g., mobile phone, tablet, laptop, etc.)...
Use a platform such as Google Meet, Zoom, or Microsoft Teams which allows you to screen-share during a video call.
One educator should set up the Kahoot! game and share the code with students in both classes by following this tutorial about using Kahoot! in a remote learning environment, and share their screen so everyone can follow along.
If students in either class don’t have individual devices...
Follow the same instructions above, with one educator starting the game and sharing their screen so both classes can follow along.
Instead of students joining the game to answer the questions, they can hold up their fingers, call out their answer, or use a paper template to indicate their response.