I hope you will consider watching this with your child, and talking about what some call our “South Hills’ mantra”. Each day, children and teachers begin our time together with the sound of Zen chimes as we sit with eyes closed, hands on our knees, and repeat:
1/ (Hand over our heart) Today may I have a kind heart (Breathe in....Breathe out)
2/ (Finger pointing to our lips) Today may I say kind words (Breathe in....Breathe out)
3/ (Hand on our foreheads) Today may I think kind thoughts (Breathe in....Breathe out)
It is a special way to begin our day, and teachers reinforce continually when we notice children begin kind (I noticed how kind you were when you told your friend how you liked her art work! I love hearing you say those kind words!)
Due to Covid restrictions, we feel children have less opportunity to share materials, equipment, toys these days. So it is particularly important to take advantage and reinforce every small act of kindness our children are displaying so they will fully understand what it is to be kind, and recognize it in others as well. It is so true that “Attitudes are caught..not taught” (Quaker saying). Observing kindness in others, having their own kindnesses reinforced, is how children understand and naturally practice kindness themselves.
At South Hills, kindness and respect are key. The children cheer each other on, respect their friends and teachers, and teachers acknowledge and reinforce their delightful acts of kindness. Of course, we fully recognize that this begins with parents, and we applaud our kind, caring and generous parents of South Hills.