Inside: This Winter Kindness Challenge is a fun and simple way to encourage our kids to spread kindness this winter. There are 4 activities for December, January and February.
I was holiday shopping with my daughters and this gorgeous Christmas tree was in the center of the store.
The tree was covered in paper angels and my girls were drawn to the tree.
As they got closer to inspect the ornaments, they saw each was covered with an age and a child’s wishlist.
We had a quiet moment in the store as I explained to my kids that each angel represented a child whose family couldn’t give them holiday presents because there wasn’t enough money after food and paying bills.
My kids’ eyes got bigger.
You mean they get no presents? they asked.
I explained that these kids might get a small present, but they may not get what they really want. So they put their wishes on an angel and hope someone, someone like us, picks their angel, buys them a few presents and they get them on Christmas.
My girls each picked an angel off the tree. They chose girls close to their ages, and then they got an angel for their brother too.
Then my kids got to play Santa and they purchased a few things off these kids’ wishlists and dropped them back off.
And then we spent a while talking.
We talked about how giving feels better than receiving.
We talked about how helping someone makes us happier.
And we talked about how even though we’ll never see these kids’ reactions, we know we made their Christmas morning more special.
We love spreading kindness as a family all through the year, but it feels extra special during the December holidays.
And we challenge ourselves to do this Winter Kindness Challenge.
Why should we have a kindness challenge?
We are raising our kids to be kind.
But we can’t just cross our fingers and hope it happens.
We have to intentionally make it happen.
We talk about kindness, model kindness and praise kindness.
Related: 60 Kindness Discussion Starters
We remind them to speak and act with kindness by making it one of our only two family rules.
We can volunteer with them to show them how easy it is to give.
In our family, we encourage both big and small acts of kindness with this Kindness Scavenger Hunt.
We brought Kindness Elves into our home to inspire more acts of kindness.
We read books about kindness like these:
Winter Kindness Challenge
Every month, we challenge our kids to do 4 kind things for others as they spread kindness to:
- Community helpers
For winter, you can print out this Challenge Checklist to post on your fridge as a reminder and as a challenge to complete it all by the end of winter. You can download it below.
Kindness Activities for December:
- Help a neighbor decorate for the holidays
- Donate a toy or several toys to an angel tree or Toys for Tots
- Collect your old toys that still work and take them to a donation center
- Remember to thank your friends and family for the gifts you receive (without any reminders)
Want more December Kindness Activities?
You’ll love our 24 Acts of Kindness Christmas Countdown
Or if you celebrate Hanukkah like we do, you’ll love this 8 Nights of Kindness for Hanukkah
Kindness Activities for January:
- Make a resolution to be kinder this New Year
- Take hot cocoa to your crossing guard or mail carrier. We use these disposable coffee cups and hot cocoa.
- Cover your sneezes and coughs in your elbow so you don’t spread germs this flu season
- Wish a safe stranger a “Happy New Year!” A safe stranger is an adult at a store or adult you see when you’re with a parent.
Kindness Activities for February:
- Send kids in the hospital an eValentine to cheer them up. You can use this link and be sure to follow their guidelines.
- Fill up or make a bird feeder. You can use this birdseed or make a bird feeder like these.
- Write a love note to a family and tell them why they’re special to you.
- Take an extra box of tissues into school for your classmates
Then, when they’re done with each months’ challenges, encourage your kids to focus on our next seasonal challenges: our Spring Kindness Challenge, our Summer Kindness Challenge, and our Fall Kindness Challenge.
Get a printout of the Winter Kindness Challenge Your Kids Can Check Off: