Teach Them Kindness

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Included in the Digital Ideas Advent Calendar with a new idea each day!

Unexpected kindness is the most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of human change. – Bob Kerrey

Teaching citizenship isn’t an additional part of the curriculum. A good lesson plan or project will get students to learn how to be kind, generous, problem-solving, caring, compassionate, imaginative, creative, emphatic, and/or helpful while also getting them to learn. The goal is to get students to take what they are learning and use the knowledge and skills to somehow improve their current lives or improve the lives of others. These skills are important for their development and necessary to be successful in life. I am sharing activities, resources, tips, web tools and mobile apps that help students learn to be good people and also get them reading, writing, and more.

Ideas and Activities

  • The slideshow below provides students ideas on how to be kind in small quick ways. Get them to brainstorm the digital equivelant of each act like maybe smiling at someone by adding an emoji or sticker.


Created with Haiku Deck, the free presentation app for iPad

  • Make an advent calendar in which everyday you suggest a small way for your students to be kind. Here’s a post and template on how to make an advent calendar with Google Docs and ThingLink.
  • Here’s an online Acts of Kindness advent calendar that emails you suggestions or take ideas from a previous version.
  • Better yet, have your students create their own calendars in which they commit to showing kindness for a week. After they complete the act, they should write a short reflection and post a link to it on their Thinglink advent calendar.
  • Here is a lesson plan I created to get your students to keep a Random Acts of Kindness journal that they later pass on to another student. They also give a presentation on the experience.
  • Inspire them with this 6 minute 40 second presentation (Pecha Kucha) about Kindness. A business student shares how performing random acts of kindness transformed her life.
  • You could get students to post videos, images, audio, or posts that exemplify kindness on a sticky wall like Padlet or LinoIt.
  • Show them any of these videos of kids performing acts of kindness and have them brainstorm ways they can be kind to others. They can add these ideas to a class cognitive map with Popplet. Popplet also has a free IOS app.
  • Have students create a school campaign to inspire others to spread kindness. They can create multimedia posters with Buncee, TackkSmore, Thinglink, Pic-CollageCanva, and Biteslide.
  • They can create a podcast about various acts of kindness. They can invite people around the school to share an anecdote then piece these clips together with an audio editor like Garage Band or Audacity. Find lesson templates and more information in this presentation about podcasting.
  • Read to them a story about kindness and have them share when someone was kind to them or when they witnessed kind acts. They can share these stories on Voicethread.
  • If you teach older students, have them adopt a younger class. They can pair up with the younger kids and teach them something new, read them books, or play games with them.
  • Students can create coupons that help the recipient in some way, such as help a peer study for a test, make lunch for someone, or do a chore.

Other Resources

Challenge:

Inspire your students to perform at least 5 simple acts of kindness and reflect on the experience.

If you enjoyed these ideas, you may want to get your copy of The 30 Goals for Teachers or my $5.99 ebook, Learning to Go, which has digital/mobile activities for any device and editable/printable handouts and rubrics. Subscribe for FREE to receive regular updates!

Bookmarks
Digital storytelling, by shellyterrell
Included in the Digital Ideas Advent Calendar! Scroll the image below and each day discover free web tools, apps, and resources.

Shelly Terrell

Shelly Sanchez Terrell (@ShellTerrell) is an award winning digital innovator, an international speaker/consultant, and the author of Hacking Digital Learning with EdTech Missions, The 30 Goals Challenge for Teachers, and Learning to Go. She has trained teachers and taught English language learners in over 20 countries as an invited guest expert by organizations, like the US Embassy, UNESCO Bangkok, Cultura Inglesa of Brazil, the British Council in Tel Aviv, IATEFL Slovenia, HUPE Croatia, ISTEK Turkey, and Venezuela TESOL. She has been recognized by several organizations and publications as a leader in the movement of teacher driven professional development as the founder and organizer of various online conferences, Twitter chats, and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Two of the projects she co-organized were shortlisted for ELTons, #ELTChat and the Virtual Round Table Language and Technology online conference. She was named Woman of the Year by the National Association of Professional Women, awarded a Bammy Award as a founder of #Edchat, and named as one of the 10 Most Influential People in EdTech by Tech & Learning. Her greatest joy is being the mother of baby Savannah and Rosco the pug. Shelly has an Honors BA in English with a Minor in Communication and a specialization in Electronic Media from UTSA, a Masters in Curriculum Instruction ESL from the University of Phoenix, and a CELTA from CELT Athens. She regularly shares her tips for effective technology integration via Twitter (@ShellTerrell), Facebook.com/ShellyTerrell, and on her blog, TeacherRebootCamp.com, which has won several awards and recognitions as one of the top ESL, Edtech and Elearning blogs. Find over 400 of her slide presentations at https://www.slideshare.net/ShellTerrell/presentations

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