Library Blog

It’s COOL to Be KIND: Random Acts of Kindness for Kids

Be kind written on a rock

Wednesday, February 17, 2021 is Random Acts of Kindness Day.

One of my biggest aspirations as a parent is that my child will grow up to be kind.  Kind to his loved ones of course, but also to the unknown people he may pass in the grocery store, the janitor at school, etc.  Sure, I want him to be happy and successful among many others too, but I fervently hope that instilling kindness in him will help him to achieve those goals.  With that in mind, I have started to include him in small acts of kindness shared with strangers in our community.  It can be as simple as leaving a few quarters near the shopping carts at Aldi, which has become our new habit.  Instead of just setting them down and moving on our way, it is important to share why we are doing it, so even our youngest children begin to grasp the idea of being kind without expecting something in return.  Of course, as the saying goes, there is truly no selfless good deed. You’ve all seen that episode of Friends, right? In an effort to make someone else’s day a bit brighter, you’ll inevitably feel better too!

There are lots of ways to make the process more engaging and fun for little ones.

Check out this resource for printable kindness calendars, BINGO cards, posters, bookmarks, coloring sheets and more: https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/printables

Check out these books about kindness for kids: https://plymc.bibliocommons.com/list/share/1203224567/1834990269

Here are some simple ways to help young children participate in COVID-safe Random Acts of Kindness for little to no cost:

  • SMILE!  Smile at everyone. It’s easy, free, and totally contagious! 😊
  • Leave a card, drawing, or bookmark in a library book for the next person to find.
  • Volunteer at a local animal shelter.  Most allow kids to visit, play or walk the animals depending on age and animal temperament.  You can even bring a book and read to them from outside their gate.  They will love the company!
  • Talk to someone new at school.  This small act can make a very big difference for a lonely child.  They may even find common interests and friendship in the process.
  • Leave quarters near a vending machine or fill someone’s parking meter.
  • Gather up old toys or clothes and donate them to a local agency for children.
  • Share a compliment.  Like someone’s shirt or hairstyle?  Tell them!
  • Mail a card or drawing to a loved one.
  • Mail a card or drawing to a stranger.  Nursing homes and senior centers are a great place to send for those who may be lonely and would love to receive something personal.
  • Chalk the walk of a public building like a hospital, library, or grocery store with kind messages. (Ex. Smile!; You are special!; Have a nice day!)  You should call and ask permission first.
  • Set out a kind note or small basket of snacks for mail carrier or delivery drivers.
  • Send thank you cards to people in your community (teacher, grocery clerk, police officer, librarian, etc.)
  • Buy a scratch off lottery ticket and give to a stranger.
  • Bring in/out the trash bins for elderly neighbor.
  • Shovel the snow or sidewalks for neighbors without accepting payment.
  • Let someone go in front of you in line at the grocery store.
  • Donate spare change or allowance to a local charity.
  • Say hello to everyone you see.
  • Paint rocks with happy pictures and uplifting messages and leave them around your community.
  • Call a relative, neighbor, or friend you haven’t seen in a while.

Spread the joy by sharing your Random Acts of Kindness with friends and family or on social media.  You’ll probably inspire kindness in others, too.

Go forth with kindness, my friends! 😊

Ashley G.

Ashley works at the Main Library. She is an Adult Services Librarian who often likes to masquerade in the realm of Youth Services. She enjoys reading, nature walks, and Netflix, but spends most of her free time trying to entertain her toddler. She loves essay style memoirs (think David Sedaris or Mindy Kaling), but also reads mysteries, historical fiction, YA fiction, romance, and literary fiction. She has an unhealthy obsession with Aldi--IYKYK.