Kindness

 

Kindness is a mindset. It’s a quality children can learn through modeling, practice, and acknowledgement. Here are three simple things every parent can do to teach their child to be  kinder, more understanding, and more compassionate.

 

1. Model Kindness

As the adult, modeling kindness is crucial. Let your child catch you in random acts of kindness. Let your child observe you opening doors, helping others, and speaking kind words. While we are all born with an empathetic soul and inherent kindness, the act of being kind should still be explicitly taught. When you see others being kind, point it out. When you do something kind for others, explain to your child why you did it.

2. Practice Kindness

Like any learned behavior, kindness should be practiced daily so that it becomes habit. As you continue to model kindness, your child should begin to practice it as well. Have patience with your child as they learn to make the right choices and encourage them through the process. Be mindful that acts of kindness look different at each age level. Let your child know that how people treat each other is important.

3. Acknowledge Kindness

Recognize every time you see an act of kindness, no matter how big or small. You should also point out rude actions and explain why they are inappropriate. Children do not need to be rewarded for being kind, but simply acknowledged. Praise them with an explanation to help reinforce the positive behavior.

Being a positive role model who practices and acknowledges kindness will help your child become more caring and compassionate.