“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” – Mark Twain
Kindness breeds kindness; we know it, and so far it’s done us all a lot of good. But when it comes to children, that message may not have hit home just yet. As parents it’s important to remember that a child soaks up everything you have to offer, so we decided to find out how children can learn kindness from their parents.
Kindness starts with manners. They learn their manners from adults, so everyone from Mom and Dad to Grandma and Grandpa needs to be on board. Be an example in the home by being a patient role model and teacher. Follow that up by taking your children to kid-friendly places, where they can practice their manners in a more comfortable environment.
After manners comes empathy. Children who are emotionally alert are better equipped to use their manners. Education.com suggests putting together flash cards with magazine pictures of people with various emotions, and asking your children to name each emotion. For more fun, you can even give kids hypothetical scenarios, and ask them to pick the flash card that represents how they would feel in that situation.
Finally comes actual kindness, and it starts with those famous “random acts.” Be the example and demonstrate random acts of kindness, like holding doors for people and complimenting great customer service. Then be sure to give your children the opportunity to be kind as well. Maybe their teacher could use a compliment, or they want to be a good friend in their classroom. If you and your child come up with ways they can spread kindness, the habits will stick and they will be on their way to being kind individuals.
Kindness can improve self-esteem for children, which can expand to reach their classroom and whole school. Kindness spreads and it’s clearly a great option for your child, so start getting your kids on board with kindness today!