10 Random Acts of Kindness for Every Age

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The holidays are a time for giving and receiving, as well as a great excuse to speak with your children about the importance of charity and kindness. Modeling the concept of helping those less fortunate as well as paying it forward within your local community is an invaluable lesson that we can instill in our children from an early age. In fact, it’s never too early to start, and the upcoming holidays are a great time of the year to highlight this important lesson.

As parents, we often feel pressure to "do it all” - our days are filled with meal prep, soccer practice, and work that follows us home. Sometimes it’s truly a successful day if everyone is alive, fed, and somewhat clean when they crawl into bed at night. Though each day brings new challenges as we navigate the often hazy road of parenting, it is truly the little things that help encourage positive behavior amongst our kids. Performing random acts of kindness is a simple, realistic way to get your kids excited about serving others and is something you can do with them at every stage of development. Here are ten great examples of random acts of kindness for every age group:

Toddlers and Preschoolers

1. Visit a nursing home - draw pictures or sing songs for the residents

2. Share your favorite toy with a friend

3. Smile and wave to everyone you see

4. Call your grandparents and tell them you love them

5. Make your mailman a card

6. Have your toddler help fill the grocery cart with cans and deliver them to a local food shelter

7. Wash your neighbor’s car with your toddler - they will love it!

8. Use chalk to draw beautiful pictures on the sidewalks

9. Hand out stickers to kids you see in stores while running errands

10. Bring bubbles to the park, along with some extras to share with other kids

Elementary Age

1. Hold the door open for someone

2. Let someone cut ahead of you in line

3. Talk to someone new at school and invite them to sit with you at lunch

4. Go through your toys and donate several to kids in need

5. Make "blessing bags” and pass them out to the homeless

6. Pick up trash that you see at the park

7. Donate some of your books and games to a local children’s hospital

8. Bring flowers for your teacher

9. Write a heartfelt thank you note to someone who helped you

10. Make a friendship bracelet for someone

Older Kids and Teens

1. Bake a treat for your teachers or neighbors - don’t forget your bus driver!

2. Buy a stranger a cup of coffee

3. Help carry someone’s groceries to their car

4. Help your parents with the dishes

5. Tape quarters to parking meters

6. Volunteer at a local organization, such as Little Helping Hands Family Volunteering

7. Write inspiring notes and leave them on random windshields in a parking lot

8. Do a sibling’s chore for them

9. Babysit free of charge for a couple who could use a date night

10. Bring some books or magazines to your doctor’s office for patients to read in the waiting room

This is just a simple list to get you started - be creative and make up your own random acts of kindness along the way! Do you have another idea to share? We want to hear it!

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