Saturday, December 1, 2012

Random Act of Christmas Kindness

I was inspired to try this with my students after seeing a blogger-mom post regarding doing this with her own family. This is a very low-tech activity . . . more than low-tech, I'd say no-tech. :) . . . no matter though, as Jewel sings in her song "Hands":  In the end, only kindness matters.
I will let you know how it goes with my students and I would love if you post your experiences as well! 
Christmastime is the perfect time of year to teach kids about giving without expecting to get anything in return. Depending on the age of your students, the following books are great read-alouds:  
  • Random Acts of Kindness by Rose Kingma  (for older kids)
  • Kids’ Random Acts of Kindness (Conari Press). 
The idea (in case you are unfamiliar with the concept) is to do something unexpected for someone without any expectation of anything in return. Often, the RAK is completely anonymous. Those who make a frequent practice of Random Acts commit to doing an act at least once a week. 
The cards in this file are meant to be left as an explanation . . . for example, if you pay for the person’s coffee behind you in line, then you ask the cashier to hand the recipient the card as an explanation when the individual’s turn comes to the register.   
Here are some ideas to get you started: 
  • Hang candy canes on a tree in a neighbor’s yard
  • Fill a parking meter, then tape a RACK card to the meter
  • Write your bus driver a thank you note
  • Offer to clean the desks in another teacher’s classroom
  • Compliment a student that you don’t know well
  • Make a card for a person and explain why you are grateful for that person
  • Clean your room without being asked
  • Create a book exchange at your school 
  • Shovel snow for a neighbor
  • Practice giving sincere compliments
  • .Pass out poinsettia plants to passers-by
  • Smile at at least 10 people in a day
  • Read a picture book to a younger friend
  • On the back of the RACK cards in this file write, “We hope you have a wonderful day!” and then put the cards under cars’ windshield wipers
  • Make Christmas cards for Veterans and take them to a local VFW
  • Take children’s books to a local hospital’s pediatric unit
  • Leave a note for the mail carrier telling him or her how much you appreciate his or her hard work
  • Tell a restaurant manager about an outstanding employee
  • Take flowers to a senior citizens home
  • Leave red carnations with a green bow on every teacher’s desk in your school
  • Bring cookies to the office secretary 

What ideas do you have that your students could complete? 

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