Fifth graders launch their own Kindness Club at school!

on . Posted in Articles of Interest

ELK RIVER, Minnesota (PNN) - March 2, 2019 - Kindness is seeping into the classrooms and corridors of an elementary school in Minnesota thanks to a group of fifth-graders.

The students at Parker Elementary School started a Kindness Club last year, and observers say it’s having a positive impact on classroom culture.

“There had been some issues in fifth grade of (students) not being very kind to each other,” said Ashley Justen, a social worker at the school in Elk River. Teachers had talked to some of the students and told them things had to change because “that’s not how you treat people,” Justen said.

Fifth-grade teacher Matt Greenhoe said he had been talking with his students one day about improving the situation when one of them, Ady Bollinger, suggested starting the Kindness Club.

“I said, ‘That’s a great idea,’ and I just kind of let them go,” said Greenhoe.

Since then the Kindness Club has blossomed, sprinkling kindness throughout the school.

Ady said they started the club because they want the youth at Parker to feel safe in school. They also want to stop bullying and improve self-esteem, she said.

“It kind of makes the world a better place having someone your age to turn to for help,” added club member Elsie Ostmoe.

The club has initiated several kindness projects. They now have a bucket on display where people can drop in notes that tell of random acts of kindness they have seen, which club members plan to read during school announcements.

Before Christmas, club members launched Operation Candy Cane, where they gave every student a small candy cane - 600 in all - with the note, “Happy Holidays from the Kindness Club.”

During Holly Jolly Week, they put notes of kindness on the lockers belonging to students with special needs. They also have produced a slideshow about kindness that they intend to share with others.

Currently, they are rehearsing a play based on the book, Stop, about a girl who is being bullied and the friend who helps her. They plan to perform the play for first-graders.

Greenhoe said the students have given up recess time to work on the Kindness Club.

Club members feel they have made a difference and said there is less bullying going on at Parker. In fact, there are fewer students using the “Buddy Bench”, a specially designated bench on the playground where students can sit if they are feeling alone and want to be invited to play with others.

Member Tessa Boche said she wants people to know they’re not alone and are part of a larger community. “It makes us feel good that everyone is getting included and no one feels left out.”

The kindness is spreading. Other students are following suit by expressing random acts of kindness, like putting positive notes on students’ lockers.

“They definitely have created a ripple effect,” she said.

This is the fifth-graders’ last year at Parker Elementary School, but those in the Kindness Club hope to carry on their kindness crusade into middle school.

They also hope some of the fourth-graders at Parker will continue with the Kindness Club and would like to see other schools pick up on the idea as well.

Eulogies

Eulogy for an Angel
1992-Dec. 20, 2005

Freedom
2003-2018

Freedom sm

My Father
1918-2010

brents dad

Dr. Stan Dale
1929-2007

stan dale

A. Solzhenitsyn
1918-2008

solzhenitsyn

Patrick McGoohan
1928-2009

mcgoohan

Joseph A. Stack
1956-2010

Bill Walsh
1931-2007

Walter Cronkite
1916-2009

Eustace Mullins
1923-2010

Paul Harvey
1918-2009

Don Harkins
1963-2009

Joan Veon
1949-2010

David Nolan
1943-2010

Derry Brownfield
1932-2011

Leroy Schweitzer
1938-2011

Vaclav Havel
1936-2011

Andrew Breitbart
1969-2012

Dick Clark
1929-2012

Bob Chapman
1935-2012

Ray Bradbury
1920-2012

Tommy Cryer
1949-2012

Andy Griffith
1926-2012

Phyllis Diller
1917-2012

Larry Dever
1926-2012

Brian J. Chapman
1975-2012

Annette Funnicello
1942-2012

Margaret Thatcher
1925-2012

Richie Havens
1941-2013

Jack McLamb
1944-2014

James Traficant
1941-2014

jim traficant

Dr. Stan Monteith
1929-2014

stan montieth

Leonard Nimoy
1931-2015

Leonard Nimoy

Stan Solomon
1944-2015

Stan Solomon

B. B. King
1926-2015

BB King

Irwin Schiff
1928-2015

Irwin Schiff

DAVID BOWIE
1947-2016

David Bowie

Muhammad Ali
1942-2016

Muhammed Ali

GENE WILDER
1933-2016

gene wilder

phyllis schlafly
1924-2016

phylis schafly

John Glenn
1921-2016

John Glenn

Charles Weisman
1954-2016

Charles Weisman

Carrie Fisher
1956-2016

Carrie Fisher

Debbie Reynolds
1932-2016

Debbie Reynolds

Roger Moore
1917-2017

Roger Moore

Adam West
1928-2017

Adam West

JERRY LEWIS
1926-2017

jerry lewis

HUGH HEFNER
1926-2017

Hugh Hefner

PROF. STEPHEN HAWKING
1942-2018

Hugh Hefner 

ART BELL
1945-2018

Art Bell

DWIGHT CLARK
1947-2018

dwight clark

CARL MILLER
1952-2017

Carl Miller

HARLAN ELLISON
1934-2018

Harlan Ellison

STAN LEE
1922-2018

stan lee