Today I was struck by kindness! It was more than a small moment because really it was so many small moments together that added up to a whole lot of awesome!
Step 1- A grade 4 teacher came to see me to find out how to link her student’s slices up to the challenge. A few of my students from last year had asked to present the challenge to their new class. As she said, “How can you say no to kids who want to write more and want to share the slicing challenge with their classmates?” Kindness oozed out of that question- I love that teachers take on what their students support.
Step 2- A former student paid me a quick visit before school. She wanted to look at a few of the Sisters Grimm books to see what else she could carry to enhance her costume (it was Book Character Free Dress Day)- she knew I had them all because it was a series I introduced her to last year. She also asked for the link to our SOLCC blog so that she could comment on the slices. She was a commenter extraordinaire last year and her specific and positive comments really boosted writing.
Step 3: One of my students was absent. As we prepared folders for conferences (Thursday and Friday) one student, on his own initiative, said, “I’ll get C’s folder ready.” It is the little things that show character and this was so thoughtful. It was a double whammy of kindness because it helped the absent student and me!
Step 4: Throughout the day I kept noticing many small kindnesses- students just doing things to help make other’s life a bit easier. I need to make note of these kindnesses more often.
Step 5: There was an after school activity taking place in my room while I worked at a table getting ready for conferences. Students greeted me and many made a connection as to how they know me. Again, these small kindnesses reflect so well on them and made me feel more cheerful about the 15 students in the room as I prepared for a busy day tomorrow.
Step 6: A colleague came by to say hi and deliver a belated birthday gift bag. She said it was not much, but that she just knew what I would like. Sure enough- a gift bag full of stationery- purple pens, highlighters, fancy paper clips, and more. What a way to end my day!
Step 7: On my way home I got a text from a friend, saying she was going to be working at a coffee shop next to my apartment if I fancied meeting up. I had work to do, so went to meet her. Before we found each other I ran into a colleague from the other campus of our school. She said she had just seen the mutual friend and was going to ask her to join her for coffee, but had “lost her”. When I told her our plan she was eager to join. We ordered our drinks and then she insisted on paying- what a nice treat.
Step 8: After getting some work done and enjoying a nice chat I headed home. I checked my students’ blogs to link up slices and what do I see? The kind girl from step 2 has made many comments (oh, my third graders are going to be thrilled)! I sent her a quick email to thank her. As I compose this slice the comments from current third graders are rolling in and I see that kindness is everywhere. These kids are writing, writing, writing, and leaving kind comments for others.
Step 9: This day makes me stop and reflect- my job over the next two days as I meet with students and their parents is to notice the many kindnesses I see. I really think that parents care most about the person their child is becoming and the kindness factor can not be undervalued. I love the chance to help the parents see another side of their child- that they may not know extends so far. The way they collaborate and communicate shows the way we are working is helping them develop in so many ways.
Step 10: Repeat, repeat, repeat. I need to see what I can do to continue the kindness.