Teaching our children kindness

Posted by / Friday 15 February 2019 / Parenting Tips
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Making someone else smile is a great feeling. One of the most valuable lessons we can teach our children is that kindness towards others can make the world a better place.

As Mark Twain famously said, “Kindness is a language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” Kindness is universal and everyone deserves to be a kind person and to be treated kindly, and we owe it to our children to raise them with this mentality.

 

A different kind of reward

When teaching our kids about compassion, we are also teaching them that rewards come in different forms. These rewards aren’t necessarily material things - a reward could be a proud or accomplished feeling, as a result of doing something nice for somebody else.

The reward that comes with kindness is priceless and acts as a ‘ripple effect’. When you make positive changes in life, they spread out around you almost like a ripple in a pond.

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"When you reach out and positively affect one other person through your interactions and words, you create a slight change in that person who is then more likely to reach out and positively affect someone else."

- Amber Olson Rourke

If you can help your child to understand that their kindness can improve the lives of others, the reward is simple: They are just as great as their favourite superhero - because they too are changing the world.

 

Random acts of kindness

Not only will teaching your child about kindness improve the lives of others, but it can also make them happier and be a great way to bond as a family. Here are some random acts of kindness that you can introduce to your child or do together:

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  1. Hold the door open for someone
  2. Do a chore for someone without them knowing or asking
  3. Leave happy notes around your local town
  4. Pick up litter
  5. Let someone go ahead of you in the queue
  6. Bake for a neighbour
  7. Donate to charity
  8. Make a thank you card for a teacher or librarian
  9. Talk to someone new at school
  10. Smile at everyone. It’s contagious!

Set an example

Kids can be extremely observant of their surroundings. If you set an example and show your kindness to others, they will likely follow suit! In being kind to others, your child will see firsthand the positive impact it has on people.