Photo: Melissa Burmester

Did you know that the latest research shows that being kind increases happiness and well-being? Kindness can lead to increases in peer acceptance, and it’s a life-long skill that’s surprisingly easy to incorporate into your child’s routine.

Being a superhero is all about making the choice to use your powers for good when you see something you can change. When kids understand the power they have to make both themselves and others feel good, choosing kindness becomes so much more than just another rule to follow.

Play “I Spy Kindness”
Kindness is all around us if we start looking. Unexpected smiles. People helping strangers carry shopping bags. Someone who gives up their seat on the bus or train.

Make a game out of spotting acts of kindness, and before you know it, your child will be full of their own ideas to make a difference.

Save the (School) Day with a Kind Word
Words matter. What does your child have to say? Ask them to use their new powers of observation in the classroom to see if a friend, classmate, or teacher’s aide might enjoy a kind note—and if so, create one for them!

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Your child’s note can be anything they want it to be, from a kind word on a piece of paper to a thank you to a teacher for their help.

Help Save the Planet by Picking Up Litter Together
Keep rubber gloves, trash bags and recycling bags in your car or travel bag and help your child take care of the earth—and make their world more beautiful.

Choose a corner, street, or playground that you as a family can help keep clean.

Demonstrate the Power of Small Acts for Big Problems
The next time your child asks a question about someone who is experiencing homelessness or about an issue on the news like immigration, do one small thing about it together as a family.

Help your child give gently used clothing to a shelter for families, make a donation, or volunteer together.

Add Gratitude to Your Evening Routine
Asking your child what they are grateful for can be an eye-opening (and profound) experience. Try asking your child before bedtime what made them happy that day.

Kindness.org Co-founder and Chief Strategist Melissa Burmester shares, “I’ve started doing this with my two-year-old and it’s become one of my favorite times of the day. Yesterday, she was grateful for sunshine, fig bars, and Grandma. The day before that it was puddles to jump in.”

Every act, no matter how small, makes a difference. (Cape optional.) Help your child engage their kindness superpowers today!