Friday, January 2, 2015

100 Acts of Kindness Challenge

Last year, I had a very challenging first grade class.  Many of them had behavior difficulties and on the whole, we had difficulty bonding as a class.  Classroom management was a challenge and throughout the year, I had to dip into my bag of tricks multiple times. One of my more successful activities involved my Hearts Full of Kindness.

I introduced the activity by discussing Acts of Kindness. We made an anchor chart on which we listed ways we had shown or others had shown kindness.  The students came up with several good ideas including:

  • inviting someone to play at recess
  • helping someone who had been hurt
  • sharing supplies
  • giving someone a gift
  • letting someone "cut" in line
  • helping someone to pick up their pencil box after it fell
I posted our list in our classroom and then presented a challenge to the class.  We had a little over a month until Valentine's Day.  I told them that I wanted to see if we could perform 100 Acts of Kindness by February 14th. The students were really excited about it and the project took off!

I copied several Kindness Heart cards on cardstock and cut them apart. First, I modeled how to fill out the cards. Then, I placed them in a basket on the back counter so students would have easy access.  I encouraged the students to fill out the cards during morning work time or after finishing an assignment.  

Here's one of the cards we collected in the first week. It says,
"Jose showed kindness when he help(ed) me carr(y) my backpack."
This is what our display looked like after a few days. 
We placed the cards on our wall display in rows of 10 for easy counting - and a math connection! During calendar time, we would count the cards and then figure out how many more we needed to get to 100. We didn't quite make our goal of 100 by Valentine's Day, but I did see an increase in acts of kindness.  Students became more aware of their own behavior, as well as that of their classmates.  So, I counted that as a win. I kept the project going until Spring Break.  

This year, I am going to introduce the Acts of Kindness project by reading a poem. You may have already noticed that I'm a poetry fan! :)

We'll use the poem to revisit our Bucket-filling discussions.  We'll also make an anchor chart listing acts of kindness.  Then I'll introduce the 100 Acts of Kindness challenge.  This year, I'll also let students know that if they meet the goal, we'll have a "Kindness Celebration" on Valentine's Day.  I want to make sure we reach our goal this year! (I have a much better group this year, but I want to keep that sense of community growing for the rest of the year.) I'll keep you posted and let you know how it's going. 

If you'd like to take part in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge, you can download my Hearts Full of Kindness packet HERE. It includes the poem, the kindness cards, 4 kindness bookmarks, and suggestions for implementation.

Let me know how it goes by posting your comments below.

Until next time,


  1. I absolutely love this idea! I'm going to download it right now!

    Sally from Elementary Matters

  2. Acts of kindness and thoughtfulness toward others are becoming rarer as we glue our eyes on tech devices! Thanks so much for this idea