Inside: Reward classroom kindness and build classroom community with this Pizza Kindness as kids work towards earning a pizza party in real life.
When I was a kid, the highlight of my month was turning in my ‘Book It’ Reading Log to earn my free pizza.
Pizza made reading even better. And since I earned it, that was one delicious tasting pizza
As a kid, I would do a lot for a free pizza, especially a pizza party at school. As would most kids.
Pizza parties at school were the highlight of the month because they felt so very special. No need to eat a lunchbox lunch or a cafeteria lunch on those pizza party days.
And of course because pizza is delicious.
Teachers can use pizza to encourage more than just reading.
Use pizza and working towards a pizza party to our advantage to encourage more classroom kindness.
Why it’s important to Praise Kindness in our Classrooms
If we are wanting to raise or teach kind kids, we teach them to be kind and not nice. But when we teach our kids to be kind, we teach them to do it out of the kindness of their hearts, without needing praise or rewards.
And that’s the longterm goal.
But when we’re working with young kids and beginning to teach them to act and speak with kindness more often, we have to encourage the behaviors we want to continue.
It’s essential to use positive reinforcement, praise and any kind of encouragement we can so the behaviors continue.
We can praise the behavior: That was so helpful. What a kind thing to say. What a kind thing you did.
Or we can praise the person: You are kind. You are helpful. You are thoughtful.
And we can use printable resources like our Caught Being Kind Notes or Kindness Hole Chart to encourage students to be kind more often.
So if the ultimate goal is to encourage kids to be kind without needing the praise or recognition or expecting anything in return, once we turn kindness into more of a habit, then we can wean them off needing the praise and the recognition.
By then, our kids will know that being kind feels good and that’s reward enough.
In the meantime, we can encourage our students to be kind together and work together and increase their classroom kindness to earn a pizza party for their kindness.
Related: How to Create Positive Classroom Culture in Under 5 Minutes
How to Use the Pizza Kindness to Reward Classroom Kindness
1. Download and print the parts of the pizza on cardstock and laminate them if you wish. (download it below)
2. Cut out each of the pieces.
3. Tell your students/group/troop/kids they will build a pizza through their kind actions and kind words.
4. Every time you see kind behaviors you want to continue to encourage, give your group a piece of the Kindness Pizza, starting with the pan, then the dough, then the sauce, then the cheese, then the toppings.
You can use as many or as few toppings as you’d like. For the bell peppers, we colored the middle part in yellow so when we tape it on the pizza, it blends in.
You can glue them down, tape them down, or Velcro them down. We used blue Painter’s Tape to attach the pieces easily.
4. Once they have built a full Kindness Pizza, have a pizza party as a group to “reward” their kind actions.
5. You can follow up with a writing/drawing activity to show what they did to earn their Kindness Pizza.
You can also read pizza books as a fun way to connect:
Pete the Cat and the Perfect Pizza Party
6. Remind them that we do not need praise or rewards for acting and speaking with kindness, but often when we are kind, kindness comes back around to us...this time in the form of a pizza!
Download the Pizza Kindness here to encourage more classroom kindness.
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