By Bethany Pitman
Have you ever heard the phrase “Be nice!” when someone is talking to kids? What would it look like if instead of saying, “Be nice!” we said, “How can you show kindness right now?” Just like reading, sports, instruments, etc., kindness is a skill that requires practice. Human nature tells us to do what is best for us, and for most people, kindness does not come naturally. When working with kids, it is beneficial to have talks and lessons devoted to teaching kindness. One of the best ways to help kids learn how to be kind is also through modeling and taking advantage of organic situations when they present themselves. Below are some easy ways that kids can practice showing kindness to one another:
- Ask a friend or stranger if they are okay after falling on the playground, or offer a hand to help someone who just fell.
- Pick up toys without being asked, or pick up a mess that someone else made.
- Compliment a teacher, parent, or student on something.
- Speak to someone with whom they haven’t interacted before.
- Thank their teacher for teaching that day.
- Ask a parent how they can help.
- Leave a note of thanks for the mail carrier.
- Compliment another student on something unexpected.
- Let someone go ahead of them in line for the slide.
- Share the prized toy with a sibling or playmate.
- Ask if anyone wants the last piece of snack before finishing it.
At the end of the day, adults and kids can revisit the kind moments that happened during the day as well as reflect on situations that could have gone differently if a kind approach had been taken.
Editor’s note: CTA has a wide variety of items for use in your children’s ministry activities. Click here to go directly to the children’s ministry section of CTA’s website and explore the options.