My voxer, twitter and instagram friend, Karen, taught me about Kindness Parades.
In the past, I have loved helping kindergarteners learn about gratitude by sharing holiday greetings with school staff and knew that with Karen’s inspiration, we could really up our game.
This year, I teach at a small, independent school and my class made and shared Christmas and Valentine’s Day greetings with teachers and staff.
I’d been seeing lots of instagram and blog posts about alphabet countdowns to the end of the year but wasn’t sure that was the right fit for my class. And honestly, I considered them too late to start. So I hatched the idea of a kindness countdown and knew it was something we could definitely take on.
First, we made a list of all the people who teach and help us throughout our week. I wrote their names and the kids wrote what they teach or do. And then we got started! We had made enough cards that they knew how to fold and for the most part, how to hold the cards so they opened correctly. I had a stock outline on the board and we would change the name and brainstorm possible sentences for each card. I modeled the first couple carefully but they had a lot of background knowledge to work with.
And then I let them go. They could orient the card horizontally or vertically. They could write on the cover or the inside. They could sign their cards with their name or use Mr. or Dr. if they aspired to. They could use a different color for every letter or word if they wanted. They could sign their names with bubble letters if they could.
We made 14 sets all together and they became their morning work. The students would come in, choose their color of paper and then find a spot to work. They started writing their own sentences, adapting each other’s cover designs and patterns, fix their own errors with beautiful oops or start again, adding labels and speech bubbles to illustrations. Each card they made was unique and perfect!
As they will tell you, they worked hard to write those 14 cards! But they were also really proud to deliver them during our 2 kindness parades today! Here are some pictures.
Ms. Wendy, our favorite science teacher.
Mr. Bradford, who lets us do amazing things in MakerSpace.
Coach Jon, a proud member of the Red family, and our incredible PE teacher.
Ms. Karen, our wonderful secretary. On her lampshade, you can see the Lights of Kindness we gave her at Christmas. (These were the idea of my friend, Michelle.)
Cael delivers to our favorite Head of School, Mrs. Glass.
Ms. Heidi gave Lily the perfect reaction!
Kaianne had to hunt Ms. Alison down all over the Middle School and we ended up finding her right outside the Art Studio!
Zach was so happy to give his future first grade teacher her set of cards!
It’s been a fun, first year of teaching kindergarten at Lake Tahoe School. I’m really sad to let this class go but already looking forward to Kindness Parades with next year’s class!