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October 30, 2017

6 Simple Ways to Add Kindness to the Curriculum

Written By: Laura
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There are so many more lessons that teachers are responsible to teach their students than just general subject matter. Establishing and maintaining a safe classroom environment is a goal that a teacher must constantly work toward. In an effort to sustain a safe classroom environment, teachers must incorporate social and emotional learning.  Monitoring student behavior and embedding character building lessons into their curriculum is vital to developing traits like kindness and empathy in students. Teaching students the value of kindness and allowing them to practice those skills is essential in helping to shape how students treat others and how they react to situations both inside and outside of the classroom. Learn how you can developing a kindness curriculum in your own classroom.

What is a Kindness Curriculum?

Help students build character through practice and emulation in the classroom. Intentionally teaching social skills and mindfulness are an intregal part of the curriculum. Activities are deliberately planning and included in today’s classrooms. Students develop an understanding of morals, the ability to pay attention, regulate their emotions, and cultivate kindness toward others. According to the article, What if Schools Taught Kindness, “The school environment can be very stressful; in addition to any issues they bring from home, many students struggle to make friends and perform well in class. Being excluded, ignored, or teased is very painful for a young child, and we thought it could be impactful to teach empathy and compassion.” This article indicates that the kindness curriculum was based around 7 objectives:

• attention

• breath and body

• caring

• depending on other people

• emotions

• forgiveness

• gratitude

 

6 Ways To Incorporate a Kindness Curriculum

The success of several studies has convinced educators that it’s important to deliberately integrate lessons and activities that promote kindness and mindfulness. Below are 5 ways that you can incorporate kindness and build mindfulness in your curriculum:

 

  1. Books that Teach Kindness

 

  1. Bucket Filling

 

  1. Active Listening

 

  1. Kindness Jar

 

  1. Compliment Circles

 

  1. Kids Care and Share

Taking the time to plan these lessons built around fostering kindness and mindfulness is vital to helping kids grow as individuals and as functioning members of society. With time always being a factor, it’s important to realize that some of these examples are integrated directly into the curriculum-based lessons. Practicing lifelong learning goals in the classroom prepares students with the skills and knowledge that they need to deal with real-life circumstances.

What are some activities or lessons that you have used to teach kindness or mindfulness? How did you assess that the lessons were successful?

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