October is National Bullying Prevention Month. During my school visits last week I asked how they were educating their students on this topic. One building I visited decided rather than focusing on anti-bullying, they would focus on kindness. They felt that knowing the impact that everyday actions, comments and attitudes can have on our students would take the positive approach. When performing an act of kindness for one person, often it ripples and that person in turn will do something nice for others. Imagine how far the ripple can spread. With that in mind, what if we all made a vow to create as many acts of kindness as we can to create a BIG ripple in our schools and in our lives by simply focusing on acts of kindness?
Here are some ideas to help you get started:
- Acknowledge each student with a greeting as they enter your room. Let them see how happy you are to see them.
- If you jam the copier, don’t leave it that way! And fill the paper tray before you leave.
- Resist temptation to “borrow” the unlabeled Diet Coke in the staff refrigerator. Or better yet, leave an extra pop in the staff refrigerator with a note on it that says “enjoy”
- Compliment another teacher’s class as they walk through the hall quietly.
- Thank your administrators for setting a positive tone in the building.
- Keep eye rolling to a minimum during your professional development meeting.
- Leave anonymous chocolate kisses in the staff mailboxes.
- Make eye contact and smile!
- Pick up your class from Art a few minutes early and admire their work.
- Pick up your class from PE a few minutes early and join in the game.
- Pick up your class from Music a few minutes early and enjoy their performance.
- Share an awesome read-aloud with another teacher, better yet- lend them the book.
- Laugh at your students’ jokes.
- Put up inspirational or humorous posters in the staff bathrooms.
- Compliment your students like crazy for their awesome ideas, incredible word choice, stupendous mathematical skills, etc.
- Take a stressed-out teacher’s after school duty.
- Email a “happy note” home to one of your more difficult student’s parent.
- Have your students decorate and sign a thank you poster for the front office staff/cafeteria staff/custodial staff.
- Tell your parent volunteers what lifesavers they are.
These are just a few ideas but imagine the ripple of kindness that we can spread across our Northwest region.