Social and emotional learning (SEL) is a hallmark of St. Anne’s-Belfield School’s curriculum. It is defined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) as “the process through which children and adults understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.” In our Kindergarten classes one important aspect of SEL is our Kindness Ninja program.
Who Are The Kindness Ninjas?
We can’t tell you that! We’ve heard rumors that the largest group of these kindness ambassadors call the East Wing home, but since acts of kindness pervade both campuses it would be hard to swear to that. Since last year’s Kindness Ninjas have moved into first grade, we suspect a new set of little ninjas will soon be busy sneaking around the hallways spreading cheer…
What Do the Kindness Ninjas Do?
They act in kind ways. It may seem simple, but the Kindness Ninjas prepare and carry out acts of kindness that might make anyone’s day better. They’ve baked cookies to express gratitude to dining hall staff members, made homemade lotion to thank their hardworking teachers, surprised East Wing students with kindness rocks on their desks and bookmarks in their library books, decorated their teacher’s desk for her birthday, left hearts and friendly messages on boarding students’ dorm room doors, rid the campus/Earth of trash, surprised our Varsity Girls’ Basketball team with a good luck banner in their locker room, and more. Being a Kindness Ninja is all about considering others’ perspectives and experiences and then taking the time to spread cheer and show how much you care. It’s also about providing young children with opportunities to experience the joyful and proud feeling that comes from doing nice things for others. Plus, it’s a great way to build community and have fun along the way!
Can I Become a Kindness Ninja, Too?
Of course, just do something kind! It’s as simple as that. But, if you’d like to be aligned with a more formal movement there is a global scavenger hunt in November in which the team with the most acts of kindness wins. Thousands of people are expected to take part in Kindness Ninja Hunt 2019, and registered teams will receive a list of 100 acts of kindness. Points are awarded for each completed act to help motivate the friendly competition.