Over the last few weeks I’ve had several intense, elucidating, and even challenging discussions about kindness. I’m grateful for each person who has helped me move along as I’ve talked with them about this. I think it will be a major topic in 2014.
While I believe it’s well intentioned, lecturing kids about kindness is not particularly effective. However, writing words with kids about their experience of kindness has been illuminating for me. Tom Pease and I wrote these verses with kids a few years ago, and I think this song is one place to start. Kids like singing it – add some motions and you’ve got a sweet little tune, presented here in a demo version.
Gotta Be Kind
You gotta be kind You gotta’ be kind
You got to keep your friends in mind
Don’t leave anyone behind
You gotta’ be kind
I’ll stand up for you to show you that I care
If you’re feeling hurt you know I will be there
When we’re asked to help at home or school to do a chore
We do the job with respect and we ask if there’s some more
When we take our turns all of us have some fun
If we’re playing fair we make friends with everyone
Friendship is a mystery rich as whipping cream.
Finding friends together is more than just a dream.
When we help each other no matter where we’re from.
Everybody feels happy. good things always come.
Shake hands with each other high five with a jump
Hug friends and your family add a bo-bo bump
© Stuart Stotts and Tom Pease, 2009