For the second year in a row, Beasley students are riding the Kindness Wave from classroom to classroom. The Kindness Wave represents a kind, thoughtful, and fun activity or gesture that students plan to do directly with another class in order to spread compassion and joy. One class is the kindness giver and the other is the kindness receiver. The class receiving the kind gesture or activity is then tasked with coming up with a positive action that can be done with another class to continue spreading kindness throughout Beasley.
Lower School and Middle School Counselor Susie McGaughey oversees this Kindness Wave initiative. She shares that one main quote inspires students as they take part in this kindness domino effect.
“One small ripple of kindness can go on to create a huge wave.”
McGaughey elaborated on this year’s kindness efforts. “We were able to get the Wave started earlier this school year and are really hoping to get the whole Lower School ‘wet’ this time around!” she said. “So far, students seem most excited by the idea of acts of kindness that involve them going into one another’s classrooms or meeting up outside together and directly interacting and connecting with other students. I wonder if this all speaks to how much we are still craving and soaking up those direct human connections that we all so sorely missed during the pandemic.”
The kind activities are rooted in love, joy, and collaboration as Lower Schoolers charge forward with our Mission of having students embrace all the world’s people with compassion. Check out where the Kindness Wave has been this school year thus far!
Wave 1: 4A to JKA
Fourth Grade Homeroom Teacher Donna Waters’ class kicked off the 2022-23 Kindness Wave in early October. The fourth graders created and led a playground scavenger hunt for the Junior Kindergarteners in JK Homeroom Teacher Bridget Wallace’s class. Waters shared, “One of the ultimate goals for this first activity was for the fourth graders to make connections with the JK kids and to practice being good role models since they are now the oldest kids in Beasley.” When asked about what they learned from the experience, here’s what the fourth graders shared:
- “We made new friends. Now the JKers say hi to us every time they see us.”
- “It was neat to see how they all get along with each other. It doesn’t matter if their friend is a boy or a girl.”
- “Our favorite part was seeing the kids smile when they got their stickers.”
- “They move really fast!”
- “We learned how to bond with little kids.”
Wave 2: JKA to 3B
The next wave of kindness landed in third grade. Junior Kindergarteners planned colorful activities that brought out a lot of smiles. Small groups of JKers and third graders painted pumpkins together and made friendship chains. On the paper chain links, students had the option of writing words of kindness. “JKA was so excited to pass the kindness wave to the third grade, our across-the-hall neighbors!” said Wallace. “The colorful paper chain we created together hangs between our classrooms and reminds us daily how small acts of kindness can bring all of us joy.”
Wave 3: 3B to 1B
In the third grade class of Miriam Rotskoff, students created a collaborative poem to recite to the first graders in Kara Pracht’s class. They took turns presenting verses from the poem in front of the younger Rams. Here is a copy of their poem about kindness:
A smile when we pass each other, that is kindness
Kindness is respect—seeing, hearing, caring for others
It’s forgiveness, acceptance, empathy
It is the key to life
And opening someone’s door
Kindness is the fuel in your body that keeps you going
And it rises above all the things that hurt our hearts
When we share it with each other
Kindness is everywhere
Kindness feels like…
Cookies fresh from the oven
Soup on a cold day
Lemonade in the summer
Kindness is everywhere
Let’s make kindness a wave that wraps around the world
We were born to be kind!
And it all starts with us
After presenting their poem, small groups of third- and first-graders gathered together. They read books about kindness and made pipe cleaner kindness bracelets with letters that spelled out their names.
In the hallway that leads from upper Shoenberg to the Lower School Cafeteria, you can see a bulletin board dedicated to the Kindness Wave. It shows the waves of kindness acts that have been passed from classroom to classroom thus far. As the kindness splashes on, McGaughey adds the new waves to the board.
“We’re learning from our students that, for them, the greatest joy in giving and receiving kindness is not so much in a ‘thing’ that is given or received but felt most strongly in the act of the exchange with one another,” said McGaughey.