Inside: Use the kindness mittens activity to teach social emotional learning curriculum and character education in a fun, hands-on way this winter.
Once I moved out of sunny California with 80 degree winters, my new favorite winter activity is spending time outside enjoying winter. We love going on winter hikes, especially after a fresh snowfall. But in order to do that, we had to completely revamp our wardrobes.
The age-old adage, there’s no bad weather just bad clothes rings true. We needed new coats, new pants, and definitely new mittens and gloves. Our cutsie southern California mittens weren’t going to cut it in a midwest winter.
Mittens-and the process of not losing mittens-are an everyday part of winter daily winter survival with kids.
And our October Volunteer Challenge is actually perfect to help others get ready for the cold winter months and make sure they have the right mittens to help them.
They’re fun ways we can connect kindness with winter.
This Kindness Mittens Activity is a perfect blend of winter and social emotional learning, perfect for December, January and February.
Why Social Emotional Learning is Important
Social Emotional Learning is a crucial part of any classroom’s lesson plans.
Related: Why We Should Teach SEL
It teaches our students problem solving skills, critical thinking skills and positive relationship skills. It builds up their Emotional Intelligence, helps bully-proof them, and research has shown that it improves their academic success.
Related: How Teachers Can Prevent Bullying
But to make social emotional learning and character education effective, we have to make it consistent, set clear expectations from our students, intentionally teach them the skills they need to be kind, and make it fun.
What’s Included in the Kindness Mittens Kind or Sort Activity:
- 24 mittens with kindness or unkindness clipart in color
- 24 mittens with kindness or unkindness clipart in black and white
- Kind and Unkind sorting coats in color and black and white
- Kindness worksheet to help kids show what they know and determine what is kind and what is not kind in color and black and white
- 2 writing sheets: 1 for early writers/pre-writers and 1 for writers.
How to Use the Kindness Mittens Activity
2. Cut apart the cards
3. Go over the pictures on the cards to ensure children understand what the picture depicts. You can use these as discussion starters before or after the activity.
4. The students will sort the cards by kind actions or unkind actions by placing the cards near the correct coat. They can work in small groups in centers, independently, or as a whole group with a pocket chart.
5. To follow up the activity, students can complete the worksheet to show their understanding.
6. To connect to writing and language arts studies, draw a picture/write how they will choose to be kind this season. Pre-writers can dictate their answers and then draw a picture.
Happy winter, happy playing in the snow, and happy cold weather that requires fun mittens!
Ready to get the Mitten Kindness Kind or Unkind Sort Activity?