Kindness is a beautiful thing.
Today begins day four of the new school year. (Edit: Despite my exhaustion, today is Wednesday, day THREE lol!) So far, the days have been filled with team building, getting to know each other, learning procedures and routines of the classroom and school, and practice, practice, practice of said procedures and routines.
I decided to have only two class rules this year. Keepin’ it simple. My rules are Work Hard and Be Kind. Working hard covers my desire for my students to always do their best, no matter the outcome. And Be Kind covers everything else I want out of a good human. Kindness. It encompasses so much.
Kindness is smiling at people you know… and don’t know. Saying good morning. Welcoming friends to class. Hugs and fist bumps and high fives and fortnite dancing together.
Kindness is helping friends that are struggling, picking someone up after they’ve fallen, cleaning up after a friend, an arm around the shoulder, a boost to the self-esteem.
Kindness is sweet words of encouragement – whether someone is struggling and needs a “You’ve got this. Keep going. I’ll help you.” or excelling and would love to hear a “You are amazing. You are so smart at math.” It’s “Want to play with me?” and “Here, sit by me at lunch,” and “I’ll show you where to go.” It’s translating what the teacher is saying into Spanish for the student that has only been in the country for six months.
Kindness is understanding that everyone has strengths and everyone has weaknesses and that it’s ok to be great at things and it’s ok to need help with things and never judging someone for their weaknesses.
Kindness is the hundreds or thousands of people across Facebook who are helping teachers they don’t know #clearthelist of things they’d love to have in their classrooms.
Kindness is teachers greeting teachers. Sharing lesson plans and creative ideas. Lending an ear to vent and a room to cool off. Lending a pen or a phone (you know we sign in at everything) at staff meetings. Sharing chocolate and coffee and chips and guac. Even as adults, kindness is still “Can I help you?” and “Here, sit by me at lunch,” and “I’ll show you.”
Kindness is knowing that everyone has a story. We may not know it, we may not see it, but it’s there. Everyone has a story and kindness is showing compassion and empathy even when we don’t understand what the other person is going through. It’s realizing we don’t need to know their story in order to show kindness.
Kindness is something within everyone’s ability to act on. Have a wonderful day today, friends, and please, be kind.
If you have the power to make someone happy, do it. The world needs more of that.