This story paper can be used in so many ways. Children could make up a story based on the picture, or simply recount what they see. Perhaps they write send a letter to Granny or Great-Granny?
Kindness is often thought of as a personality trait - but we believe that you can teach and encourage children to be kind, and help them look for ways to incorporate kindness into their daily lives.
Another way to encourage children to be kind is to "brainstorm" with them, planning and point out little things that they can do to make a difference, help others and boost the people around them. We've got plenty of ideas to get you started here, below.
Also below you will find some simple printables that you can use in your brainstorming and planning sessions. You will also find a variety of posters that can be put out on display to serve as a reminder to children to "Be Kind".
Brainstorming Ways of Being Kind
Use these ideas as talking points in a "being kind" brainstorming session.
Being kind at school:
- Not all children are happy at school every day. Someone might be feeling sad, or scared, or lonely. How could you spot another child that might need help? What might you do?
- Are there ways that you could help a busy teacher or teaching assistant?
- Does being tidy count as being kind?
- What could you do if a classmate was feeling grumpy? What could you do if you were feeling grumpy?
- Can smiling make a difference?
- What are some kind things you might say to a teacher? To a classmate? To a friend?
- How would it make a difference if everyone tried to be kind?
- Have you ever been unkind at school?
- Does being kind to someone else make you feel happier?
- Can you think of any particular ways that you could be kind (or kinder) at school?
Being kind with siblings:
- Is it easy to be nice / kind to your siblings?
- Is being nice the same as being kind?
- If you are being kind to your siblings, does anyone else benefit?
- What could you do if a brother or sister was feeling sad?
- Are your siblings ever kind to you? In what ways?
- Have you ever been unkind to your siblings? How did it make you feel?
- Can you think of any particular ways that you could be kind (or kinder) to your brothers or sisters?
Be kind at home:
- It is easy to take "home" and parents for granted! Do you?
- Do you have to ask other people (like your parents) for ways to help? Or can you think of some ways you can help without asking? Is helping the same as being kind?
- Do you like your home to be nice? Who makes it nice?
- Have you ever been unkind at home?
- If you look for ways to be kind at home, who benefits?
- Can you think of any particular ways that you could be kind (or kinder) at home?
Being kind while out and about:
NB: Although it is important to be kind, it is much more important to be safe. Please don't approach strangers in an effort to be kind unless an adult is with you and knows what you are intending.
- Should you only be kind to people that you already know - like your neighbours, or other people in your building, perhaps?
- Does it matter if you are kind to people you don't know?
- Who will know if you are kind to "strangers" or not?
- Is it more important to be kind to old people or to young people?
- Does it matter if someone says thank you when you are being kind?
- Is smiling at someone a way to be kind?
- Sometimes when we think we are being kind to someone, they might not like it or even get angry. Can you think of why that might be? What might you do in those circumstances?
- Can you think of any particular ways that you could be kind (or kinder) when you are out and about?
General thoughts on being kind:
- Is being kind the same as agreeing with everything that someone else says / thinks?
- There is a saying: "Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind". Is that true?
- There is a saying: "In a world where you can be anything, be kind." Do you agree?
- Can being kind hurt? Can being kind get you into trouble?
- "Most comedy is based on getting a laugh at somebody else's expense. And I find that that's just a form of bullying in a major way. So I want to be an example that you can be funny and be kind, and make people laugh without hurting somebody else's feelings." Ellen DeGeneres. What does Ellen mean by "getting a laugh at somebody else's expense"? Have you ever done that? How did it make them feel? How did it make you feel? Was it kind?
Our Being Kind Printables
Sometimes a nice cup of tea is all that is needed to make us feel cared for ... but there could be so much more going on in your child's imagination when they see this story paper!
This set of 7 posters can be printed out for display in the classroom, or used on the whiteboard, perhaps, to prompt discussion about small ways that children can make a difference. Do you have to be big, strong, powerful, adult, rich, perfect to make a difference? No!
Available in colour or black and white, our "Making a Difference" story paper illustrates various scenarios in which children are making a difference, and ask children - do you have to be big, strong, powerful, perfect, adult and rich, to be kind and helpful.
This poster is sure to catch children's attention and remind them to be on the look-out for someone who might need their help. A good one to put up in the classroom or corridor, perhaps, especially at the beginning of the school year.
A cute poster reminding children to be kind with the words "Does someone need your help today?" Sometimes a simple reminder is all that is required...
Schools, classrooms and groups of children of all kinds can become nasty with gossip. This poster reminds children that gossip isn't kind and can provide a starting point for discussion in a PSHE lesson, too, perhaps.
Kids can use this story paper - which comes in colour or black and white - for writing a story about a playground accident, or perhaps for thinking about ways they might "be there" to help other children who need a hand.
This lovely picture shows a boy holding open a door for his father as he walks into the nursery with a baby. Kids can use it as a prompt for writing an interesting story - or for thinking about ways they can be helpful around the home!
Here's a great way to encourage children to be kind to everyone. Can they use our "I like to be kind" writing paper to recall some of the kind things they have done for others? Then maybe they can discuss what they've written with friends?
Send someone this bright and cheerful greetings card to reward them for being kind to you or to someone else...
Print this simple poster featuring the words of Mother Teresa: "Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless."
This little quote from Aesop is one of my favourites, and this printable poster is a great way to encourage some little acts of kindness into the classroom or home. "No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted."
Thinking about how a child can help at home is the theme of this printable page. Perhaps he or she could help with chores, tidying up a bedroom and putting away toys, reading to a baby brother or sister and so on.
Why not encourage children to think about how they might be able to help out at school using this fun printable? Perhaps they could take on a role in the classroom, look out for a shy classmate, pick up rubbish in the playground, or hand out books ...
There are so many ways we can be kind - can the children think of as many as they can and write them on this cheerful writing paper? Great as a solo activity, but also good for a group where children can share their different ideas with each other once they've finished.