Inside: Want to raise kinder kids but don’t know how? Use this 365 Days of Kindness Calendar for Families to encourage your kids to remember to be kind more often.
We were at a store and my son heard coins drops. He ran over and helped an elderly gentleman gather them all up.
I walked out of a restaurant and saw a wallet behind a man’s chair that fell out of his pocket. I pointed it out to him.
My hubby was walking in a parking lot and saw an older gentleman fall and ran to make sure he was okay.
The table next to us spilled a drink and we handed them our stack of napkins.
A female teenage referee stood up to grown men with grace and confidence and I went up to her after the soccer match and complimented her on how she handled a tough situation.
My daughter invited a girl who doesn’t have a lot of friends to be her partner on the school field trip.
When we leave a small store, we thank the person, even if we didn’t buy anything from them.
We smile at strangers and say “hi” or “good morning.”
Kindness comes in all shapes and sizes.
And while we talk to our kids about kindness often and read about kindness, that’s not enough.
Kindness is a verb.
It’s something you do.
We have to consciously make a choice to act and speak with kindness daily so it becomes a habit.
But it can often be hard to think of how to show kindness.
This new Family Kindness Calendar has 365 kid-appropriate kindness activities.
As a family, you can do one act of kindness every day.
And one act of kindness, times 365 days in a year, will equal 365 kinder moments.
And those kinder moments can change the world for the better.
Why we’re raising our kids to be kind:
In our family, kindness is so important, it’s one of our only two family rules.
I want my kids to be happy and successful in life and the fastest way to both of those things is to give kindness out to the world around them.
When we can give freely and willingly and joyfully without expecting anything in return, not only does our happiness levels increase, but it increases for the people around us.
We can make others’ lives happier or easier because we can and because we want to and that in turn adds intrinsic value to our own lives.
We can connect with others around us on a deeper, more human level.
And when we practice being kind to others, kindness becomes a habit. A lifestyle.
Just something we do with little, to no fanfare.
But to make that happen, we have to be relentlessly consistent.
We can just be kind once and assume that will be enough to ensure our kids are kind people.
So we have to model kindness for our kids and do these acts of kindness with them.
And when we have a physical reminder in the form of a calendar in front of us every day, our family values and our actions will line up more frequently.
Why families need a kindness calendar:
Families are beyond busy these days.
We’re constantly living out of our car, racing from one after school activity to the next.
Some days, it feels like we’re never together as family since my hubby and I have to split duties to get our three kids where they need to be.
And since we’re so busy, that leaves very limited time for the dishes and the piles of laundry and the homework projects that need to be worked on.
So that leaves even less time to prioritize acts of kindness.
And I get it.
Being kind sounds amazing.
Volunteering and giving to charity sounds amazing.
But for busy families, it can be daunting to find the time to intentionally give to others.
And money’s tight. Most months, there’s more month left than money.
How in the world can we justify giving to others when we don’t have enough for ourselves?
But here’s the deal.
We always have time for what we find important.
Sometimes, we just need the reminder.
This family kindness calendar will be our reminder.
We’ll look up at today’s date and be challenged to do one kind thing before we head to bed.
Especially when many acts of kindness take zero planning or time.
It can be saying “hi” to someone or giving a compliment to your teacher.
When we’re reminded to speak and act with kindness, it’s easier to find the time to do it.
And I know money is tight. It’s tight for most families, mine included.
But I’m always reminded we have way more than enough when we remember to give to others who have less than us.
And no matter how little any one person has, someone always has less.
So I can give my kids a dollar to hide at the Dollar Store for a lucky kid and I can buy a few extra cans of green beans when they’re on sale to donate to the food bank.
And when we give to others, it helps us focus on our own gratitude and just how lucky we are to have what we do have.
This kindness calendar makes kindness simple. Easy. A no brainer.
How does this 365 Kindness Calendar for Families work?
This is a yearly calendar that can be used year after year because while there are dates of the month, they’re not associated with a day of the week.
So every January 9th, you’ll do the same act of kindness: Giving your mom a compliment. (Yes, please).
And every August 1st, you’ll take cookies to a neighbor.
And the best part of this calendar? You don’t have to wait until January 1st to start it.
Whatever month it is, you can flip to that month and begin. No need to wait until the 1st of any month.
And with 365 different acts of kindness your kids can do, they’ll be inspired to act and speak with kindness right now to their:
- Classmates and friends
- School personnel
- Teammates and opponents
- Service workers (firefighters, mail carriers, garbage collectors, crossing guards, etc.)
Some kindness activities require no money and no preparation.
Other ideas do require a little prep and a little money.
But this kindness calendar also comes with a list of supplies and resources you’ll need to carry out each of these 365 acts of kindness… things like hot cocoa packets and rocks and paint pens and pencils.
And if one of these kindness acts doesn’t work for you or your kids, you can change it or skip it.
What types of kindness activities are suggested?
All these kindness suggestions can be done by school-age children or younger children with the help of an adult.
There are seasonal suggestions like donating to Toys for Tots in December and sharing an umbrella with someone in April.
And because kindness can be hard to explain to our kids, each activity focuses on a specific type of kindness:
- Generosity and giving to others
- Being friendly
- Being an includer
- Encouraging and Cheering on others
Because Januarys would be better with more kindness. And so would Mays and Augusts and Novembers.
And our kids can make that happen.
Our kids can be agents of change who make the world a better place.
One small act of kindness a day.
Over and over again, each day of the year.