By Sarah R. Moore
We know that genuine gratitude is scientifically proven to be good for people. Further, there are few better ways to foster gratitude and create a sense of meaning than serving others. What about acts of kindness for kids, though?
Of course children can do good work for others. Just like with all things, the more they engage in altruistic behaviour from a young age, the more natural it can feel for them to continue as they grow older.
With the purpose of fostering caring communities that start with our youngest members, here are 25 random acts of kindness for kids. (Good news – adults can do them, too!)
Where do we get started with acts of kindness for kids?
You can use an advent-style calendar or multi-compartment storage box and pick a random act of kindness each day. Even a regular old shoebox or a cookie jar can work well. Every day, let your child pull a pre-written note from the container and see what good you get to do together.
25 Acts of Kindness for Kids
- Leave a “just because” or holiday card for someone you don’t know. “Happy Tuesday” or “Because we care” are perfectly valid “holidays” these days.
- Rake someone else’s yard together.
- Use chalk to write a positive message or draw something festive on someone’s footpath.
- Leave a penny next to a fountain for someone else’s wish.
- Call someone your child has been missing, or someone who’s been missing your child.
- Support an animal shelter with supplies or the gift of your time.
- If you’re able, give your child money to give to a cashier, to contribute to the purchase for the next person in line. (Or better, several people back to keep it anonymous). If you’re not going to a store, online gift cards make great alternatives.
- Leave a chocolate on someone’s pillow in your home.
- Leave a note of joy and good cheer on someone’s car.
- Find someone whose newspaper or package has been delivered to their sidewalk. Move it up to their doorstep.
- Find some rubbish outside and throw it away.
- Go somewhere and smile or wave at everyone you see. Count the smiles you get back!
- Find or purchase a toy to donate.
- Give a warm meal to someone who needs it.
- If you have a safe way to do it, ask a stranger how his or her day is going. Listen sincerely to the answer.
- Research charities together and let your child decide how he wants to support one.
- Host a meal, snack, or tea time for a friend or neighbour. If you’re unable to spend time together in person, arrange for a virtual visit.
- Send a letter to an individual or organisation to suggest a positive change for society.
- Pay someone a sincere compliment.
- Pick up sticks, leaves, or rocks from the sidewalk and move them somewhere safer.
- Write a thank-you note to your mail carrier and leave it in your mailbox.
- Give away 10 hugs today. If you’re staying home, deliver those hugs to those with whom you live.
- Choose non-perishable food items to donate.
- Tell someone you don’t normally tell that you love or really like them.
- Sweep or shovel a neighbour’s driveway.