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College Park students inspiring positivity through “12 Days of Kindness”

College Park students are learning not only how to be kind, but how to inspire others to be kind as well, through a fittingly named initiative called “12 Days of Kindness.”

Grade six students at the school have spent the last few days and will spend the next as well learning about various ways to show kindness in all facets of their lives. The event is inspired by the “12 Days of Christmas”, and so far, they’ve learned about kindness in their classroom, in the hallways, in their neighbourhood and to their family. They’ve also done Kindness for the SPCA, where they raised donations for the local animal shelter.

Teacher Christine Theissen says hopefully this is something the students can take away for the short and long term as a habit and can start in their own home.

“Especially this time of year with the stress levels rising for everybody, it tends to have siblings fighting at home a little bit. So I said that if they’re looking for ways to be kind, maybe those fights and arguments are going to be happening at home.

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The class is also getting some guidance from a top athlete as well. Biathlete and cross-country skier Paralympian Brittany Hudak has been mentoring the class throughout the year. The students sent updates to her through Twitter, and in turn, she sends a video back, talking to kids about various parts of social-emotional learning, after which they do activities on what they learned.

Theissen adds that at the end of the day, students will feel how their kind acts resonate with others, even small ones.

“We get messages back, they see how the little things they’re doing, like putting notes on lockers are impacting other students and staff members. The feedback has been really positive for them. So they’re recognizing if they’re nice and kind to someone, that kindness spreads.”

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