Have you ever heard of a « kindness wave? » It’s a sweet, thoughtful, and often fun gesture from one to another that is rooted in compassion and care to express—you guessed it!—kindness. Thanks to Lower and Middle School Counselor Susie McGaughey, all of the MICDS Lower School will be swept up in a Beasley wave of kindness by the end of the school year.
In the fall, Ms. McGaughey challenged each class to surprise another with a student-directed act of kindness once it became their turn. « One tiny ripple of kindness, » she explained, « can go on to create a huge wave. » Only one class gives the act of kindness at a time to another special class of their choosing. Once the kindness act is received, the receiving class then takes the kindness baton, dreams up the next act of kindness, and picks the subsequent, lucky class of recipients to share kindness with.
Although The Kindness Wave is still being ridden across Lower School, see the photos below of where it’s been thus far!
Wave 1: 4B to SKB
To kick everything off, The Kindness Wave began in Chris Brennan’s fourth-grade class which decided to surprise students in Kelly Hummel’s Senior Kindergarten class. Senior kindergarteners were studying the country of India in their classroom, so fourth graders designed a game to help them celebrate Diwali, or the Festival of Lights. Similar to « sharks and minnows, » the fourth-grade variation, « flames and candles, » resulted in lots of laughter and running on a crisp, November day. Fourth graders escorted their new SK buddies back to their classroom afterward and presented them with a personalized Diwali headband for them to take home.
Wave 2: SKB to 2B
Kelly Hummel’s SK class decided to make homemade gingerbread and sparkly blue playdough to give to Maggie Kraushaar’s second-grade class. Instead of just giving the playdough to the second graders, the SK students created a fun scavenger hunt for the older Lower Schoolers with the surprise playdough revealed at the end. As the scavenger hunt progressed, anticipation built steadily for the second graders. Once they solved all of the clues in the scavenger hunt, they were delighted to receive the playdough from their SK friends.
Wave 3: 2B to JKA
Ms. Kraushaar’s second-grade class decided to spread The Kindness Wave to Bridget Wallace’s Junior Kindergarten class. They hosted a craft party where students created their very own slime and colorful stress balls. What a fun way to spread kindness!
Wave 4: JKA to 4C
Junior Kindergarteners invited Jen VanDyken’s fourth-grade students over to remember all of the fun they had in the JK classroom when they were just beginning Lower School. All around the room, students were playing with playdough, having fun with board games, holding baby dolls, and coloring. The JKers had a lot of fun sharing this moment with their fourth-grade friends, and the fourth graders had a blast reminiscing about all of the activities they did when they were younger. Oh to be young, again!
« So many of these acts revolve around creative thinking and using little more than your own creativity as a gift to someone else, » McGaughey said. « My hope is that students can feel empowered to continue using their unique gifts and talents to spread kindness to others and to experience the joy of giving and receiving those gifts from others. It is vitally important as we work to move through this pandemic that our students learn to reconnect with others and rebuild community in our schools. I love the notion of doing that through sharing and receiving acts of kindness and making the whole experience fun and surprising! »
Where will The Kindness Wave splash next? We can’t wait to find out!
Thank you to Ms. McGaughey, our Lower School teachers, and our fun-loving students for making sure kindness is staying very much afloat throughout Beasley.