Bringing mindfulness into the classroom by teaching kindness

Posted on August 03 2016

It’s almost time for kids to be back in school and educators are looking for ways to create a warm classroom climate.  Kindness is an element of living mindfully and teaching kindness builds character and encourages children to pause and take notice of others in a positive way.  

Below are a few kindness activities that take little or no time to do.  Share a few of these ideas with your students and discuss other ways to spread kindness. Occasionally revisit kind deeds they have done, and discuss how it made them feel.  Spending time throughout the day doing kind things for others can be extremely uplifting and satisfying, and your students may even notice others paying it forward.

  1. Say “hello” to everyone you see today.

  2. Donate books you no longer use to those in need.
  3. Cut a snowflake from paper and give it to a special friend.

  4.  Hand write a letter and mail it to someone special.
  5.  Make a thank-you card for your mail carrier or bus driver.

  6.  Hold a door for someone even if you have to wait for them to catch up.

  7.  Ask someone how they are doing today and really listen to their response.

  8.  Smile at every single person you see for the entire day. You will probably get rewarded with smiles in return.

  9.  Let someone go ahead of you in line.

  10.  Help a neighbor or classmate out with a job.
  11.  Bake a treat for someone and share it with them.
  12.  Help a teacher or parent do something you take for granted (wipe the tables, pick up the floor, make a snack).

  13.  Pick up trash you see on the ground. (Be sure to wash your hands afterwards.)

  14.  Sit with someone at lunch that looks lonely.

  15.  Give at least five compliments to others for a day.
  16.  Ask someone, “What can I do to help you today?”
  17.  Really listen to someone when they are talking to you. Be in the present and don’t let your mind wander.

  18.  Offer to carry someone’s backpack or other item they may be carrying.

  19.  Make a phone call to someone who is important to you.

  20.  Volunteer to help another student with their reading or math. You may even want to buddy up with a student from another grade.

~Excerpt from the Beginner’s Mind Mindfulness Teaching Toolkit teaching manual.

The Beginner's Mind Mindfulness Teaching Toolkit is a mindfulness curriculum for elementary children.

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