It’s been a crazy KIND month here in Arizona, our pay it forward efforts have been unexpectedly coming back at us tenfold! It’s bananas how the kindness ripple effect works. We’re so appreciative of the heartfelt notes we’ve received, candy, lip gloss, kind text messages and so on.
Rylie has really caught on to the understanding that being kind makes you happy, and makes others happy, and especially makes mama happy. And that’s all we want right, a happier world with kids who grow up to be kind adults?
As an adult I sometimes find it difficult or awkward to extend a compliment or say “hey, thanks for being my friend”, or “that thing you said, it really cheered me up.” Do you? My kiddo is learning early on to do these types of things, and she does them so confidently. I’m kinda jealous of her carefree attitude to be honest. She pushes me to be a better person.
A few weeks ago I found a note in her backpack with an ace of diamonds on it and her skateboard coaches name. When I asked about it she explained that it was an award for a person who sets her up to succeed. My mom heart turns to mush knowing this is something she recognized in him on her own and that she couldn’t wait to give it to him.
GIVING KIDS THE TOOLS TO BE KIND
I’ve found it’s pretty easy to arm kids with the means to be kind. Whether it’s sitting with them and writing small notes to hand to friends or teachers, or putting a few little knick knacks in their backpack to give to someone who might be having a bad day.
The other day we were preparing for Rylie’s un-birthday (yes, that’s a kindergarten summer birthday kid thing) and realized we had 10 extra smelly erasers left from the goody bags we were building. It baffles me why there are always 30 kids to a class yet it never fails that the jumbo pack of anything only has 18 or 20 items in it. Beside the point though. The point is, she kept five and put five in her backpack to have on hand when she felt it was the right time to do something kind. The best part of my day has been when she bounces into my car to tell me she paid it forward today and made someone happy.
While I’m not a believer in always having to give materials things to show you care, I think sometimes, particularly for a five year old, it’s an easier concept to grasp and the item is a good reminder to do it. So that’s our method. How do you teach your kiddos to be kind? I’d love to hear!