30 random acts of kindness for kids
Are you raising kind kids? Wednesday November 13th is World Kindness Day, so now is a great time to reflect on what kindness means to us, as well as what it looks like in our families.
Ask just about any parent if they value kindness and they’ll say yes. We all want to raise kind kids. In fact, most parents (you too?) say they value kindness above all else.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the message our kids are receiving from us.
In fact, research tells us that most kids think their parents value academic success and achievement over kindness. Which means that somewhere along the way, our message about kindness is becoming lost.
So how do we get it back?
Well, there are lots of ways to encourage kindness in our kids. And I’ve written about them before in a previous blog post, How to Teach your Kids to be Kind. So I ‘m not going going to go into all of them again now.
But what I will encourage you to do is dive in and get your hands dirty (metaphorically speaking of course!).
One of my suggestions in my previous post was to talk to your kids about what kindness means and what it looks like, and to make a list of kind things they can do for others. And then of course, you’ll need to do them!
Random Acts of Kindness help kids develop empathy
When we engage in acts of kindness we help our kids understand how our actions impact others. It helps them to understand the different experiences of others, as well as the feelings of others. In other words, it helps them develop empathy.
Empathy is an important skill – one of the 5 skills children need to develop in order to build emotional intelligence. When we understand the emotions and experiences of others, we can use them to guide our own behaviours and responses. Empathy helps us develop close, connected relationships and respond mindfully to others.
What are Random Acts of Kindness?
Random acts of kindness are things we do for others without the expectation of receiving anything in return. In fact, many times we complete these acts anonymously and receive no acknowledgement at all of our good deed. It is kindness done simply to help others feel good.
Below is a list of kindness activities for you to try with your kids this month. These are all simple, low or no cost activities that are appropriate for kids. I’ve included a range of different activities that will be suitable for different ages. Some to be done within the family, and some for outside. Choose the ones that are most appropriate for your own situation, or come up with your own!
The Kindness Challenge
You can grab a printable version of the list down below. And if you hang out on Instagram, we’d love you to join our Kids Kindness Challenge! Just snap a pic of your child completing their random acts of kindness and share using the hashtag: #mindfullittleminds. I’d love to share your pics with our community!
30 Random Acts of Kindness for kids
- Hold the door open for someone
- Smile at everyone you see today
- Tape some coins on a vending machine for someone else to find
- Leave a kind note in a library book
- Donate an old toy to charity
- Leave encouraging chalk messages on the footpath
- Donate clothes that no longer fit you to a charity
- Help a friend with their homework
- Bake and deliver some cookies to a neighbour
- Surprise someone with a letter in the mail
- Tell someone a joke
- Invite someone new to play with you
- Clean your room without being asked
- Leave a kindness rock at the park
- Make a cup of tea for mum or dad
- Wash the family car
- Draw a picture for a friend
- Pick up rubbish on your street or around your neighbourhood
- Bring your neighbours bin in from the kerb
- Pick flowers for someone you love
- Bring your teacher a coffee
- Share your snack with a friend
- Donate food to a food drive
- Give someone a hug
- Give someone a compliment
- Write a thank you note
- Do someone else’s chores for them
- Let someone ahead of you in the line
- Help mum or dad make dinner
- Tell someone you love them
Sarah is a psychologist, mama of 4 and the creator of Mindful Little Minds. She has over 10 years of experience working with children, adolescents and families experiencing mental health problems and has a special interest in anxiety disorders in children. In her spare time she enjoys hugging her kids, drinking coffee, and telling anyone who’ll listen how tired she is.