Thursday, March 16, 2023

Acts of Kindness

In Small Acts of Kindness Can Have Big Impacts on Recipients, Study Finds “Performing random acts of kindness increases happiness in both givers and receivers, but we find that givers systematically undervalue their positive impact on recipients.”

People don’t realize how much they can do for others, even people they don’t know. A random act of kindness can be for someone you don’t know or even someone you do know.

It makes both the giver and the receiver feel good.

When I talk to elderly people who are in need of help, I find that many are reluctant to ask for help. They feel that it makes them look weak or needy and they don’t like feeling that way. Many times, after I explain that they would actually be helping the person giving help, they are more willing to accept help.

Many of my students with special needs know what it is like to be on the receiving end of getting help. Some receive academic help and others may get even more personal help outside of academics.

When I first brought up the idea of doing service projects where the class helps others, they seemed surprised. They never thought that they had the ability to help others. We started with small projects and students were excited about them.

One year, we made flag pins that I gave out at a Veteran’s Day ceremony to veterans who attended. They were happy to hear that young students recognized them and were thankful for the pin. I took pictures of the veterans who took the pins and shared them with my students.

Once, we made thank you notes to give to the staff at the school that tends to be unnoticed such as the lunch room ladies and custodians. They were surprised by the notes and happy to get them.

Students learned that a random act of kindness didn’t have to involve money. It could be a kind word or doing something nice for someone at any moment. One student saw a teacher struggling with some materials and offered to help her. Another student saw some trash and picked it up. Some students would look for another student who seemed quiet or withdrawn and asks them if they were okay. If new students were sitting by themselves at lunch, my students would go sit with that person.

There are so many ways that people can do a random act of kindness and it doesn’t have to be on any specific day. Maybe when a person is the receiver of this act, they will pass it on to someone else. The world will be a better place.

What random acts of kindness would you suggest? Please share. 

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