The middle of winter is challenging. The magic of the holidays is long over. Sometimes there are days or weeks where we don’t see much of the sun; it feels dark all the time. The cold can be so biting. By the time you spend the hour it takes to get your kids ready to go play outside, they are running back inside demanding hot chocolate. There is often not much to look forward to. Spring is still a distant dream. It’s this time of year when we need to shake things up. When we need to dig deep into our parenting bag of tricks. I’m hoping I can help you with that by participating in Random Acts of Kindness Day, which is coming up on February 17th!
What is Random Acts of Kindness Day?
Random Acts of Kindness Day is a nationally celebrated day encouraging communities to connect together through kindness. Random Acts of Kindness is a nonprofit who creates tools for families, workplaces, and schools to have a common language around helping one another to create a positive culture through simple acts of kindness. You could participate in this day as a stand alone or engage in an entire week/month full of acts of kindness.
Upon learning about National Acts of Kindness Day and learning about www.randomactsofkindness.org, this feels like the perfect time to pause and reflect on how we can send more goodness into the world at a time that often feels dark, isolating, and cold.
How to Celebrate
Begin a week or two in advance by talking to your family about participating in National Random Acts of Kindness Day. Ask your children and family for ideas of what your family could do to celebrate the day. Sometimes I think I need to go into something like this with a plan already laid out. However, I am continuously blown away with the suggestions my kids come up with. The more your honor and listen to their voices and ideas, the more buy-in you will have. Make a plan on what you will do during the kindness week or the actual day.
Start With the ‘Who’
Another way to gear up in celebrating National Random Acts of Kindness is to have a family discussion about who might need some love, kindness, or extra effort. Maybe your children are really missing their grandparents. In the middle of winter, you may notice you haven’t seen your elderly neighbors out and about as much. They may need some extra love. There might be a teacher, friend, coach, or another loved one who you know is busy or stressed needing some care. Make a list! Then, brainstorm how to make those people in your life feel extra special and loved.
Start With the ‘How’
After having the conversation about Random Acts of Kindness Day, figure out how you can honor that time. Your family could make a calendar for the week or the entire month of February. There could be a small act of kindness written on it every day. Your family could brainstorm ideas, put them on little popsicle sticks and pick one out of a jar throughout the week. Maybe each member of your family creates one act of kindness activity. Then, you spread that out during the week or month. Get your family involved!
In short, the possibilities are endless here as there is never a limit on kindness, love, and acts of care.
Picture Books that Connect
There are many places to look for acts of kindness ideas. One of the best places is through using picture books! Here are a few favorites to help your family get inspired.
Lansing Mom is here to share our tried and true favorites. This post does contain affiliate links that help support our small business but every product is something we love!
- Be Kind by Pat Zielow Miller: Tanisha spills grape juice all over her new dress and another classmate examines what it means to be kind and how to show kindness to others. It’s a beautiful story with several ideas to spread kindness.
- I Walk With Vanessa: A Story About a Simple Act of Kindness by Kerascoet: Sometimes kindness can be as simple as walking home with someone who needs a friend. This wordless book shows that you don’t even have to say anything to be an ally.
- Pass it On by Sophy Henn: This book helps us to notice things in our world that are positive and then pass them on to others. See a smile? Pass it on! Sometimes one of the best ways to spread kindness is to pass on other acts of care we see around us. There is good everywhere when we look for it!
- What is Given From the Heart by Patricia C. McKissak: When a family loses everything in a fire, a young boy named James, who is also down on his luck, tries to think of what he can do to help. This beautiful story helps us know that when you lead with kindness from your heart, it will reach the hearts of others.
Enjoy Spreading Kindness
Acts of kindness are for anyone at any age. Involving your family in helping others not only makes others feel good, but makes you feel good as well. At this time of year, in the dead of winter, being more kind might be exactly what your family needs to change things up and make others smile. Celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Day on February 17th. Or, let the joy continue through the whole month of February. Either way, show your family, friends, and members of your community a little extra love this February!
Want to spread more kindness? Check these out: