Social and emotional learning takes new importance in an education curriculum to teach respect and responsibility from an early age
(September 2019 – Phoenix AZ) Bullying and cyberbullying rates are staggering—on average, one in three children have experienced some form of unwanted, aggressive, behavior. There is a strong need for character education in the classroom, and The Be Kind People Project offers the solution through their virtual programs that keep students engaged as they learn and move with THE BE KIND CREW®.
Teachers across the nation are invited to join educators worldwide who already use The Be Kind People Project’s free online program, The BE KIND Break™. The BE KIND Break is a teacher’s best friend when it comes to providing engaging bell work or filling down-time in the classroom. The BE KIND Break offers free, ready-to-use lessons for students in grades K-8, that are written to national academic standards, all while encouraging students to be kind from bell to bell.
“We understand how busy teachers are,” says Bo Whittenton, Chief Services and Programs Officer for The Be Kind People Project, “We want to provide them with high quality, ready-to-use content they can use however they wish.” Whittenton continues, “We go to schools across the USA for two main reasons: 1) To thank and honor teachers and 2) To teach kids the important skills of kindness. This free resource demonstrates an ongoing commitment to America’s teachers and to building a generation of respectful, responsible, and caring citizens and adults.”
The Be Kind Pledge™ is the foundation for teaching kindness skills to students. Research has clearly shown that strong pro-social
skills demonstrated between the ages of 5-13 are predictors of future health, academic achievement, and economic contribution to communities. The Be Kind Pledge teaches youth to be encouraging, positive, supportive, helpful, honest, thankful, considerate, respectful, responsible, and to be a friend. Says Whittenton, “We have seen dramatic positive changes in the school learning environment when The Be Kind Pledge becomes a common code of conduct and expectations.” She continues, “When teachers have classrooms that are following The Be Kind Pledge, it gives more time for teaching and learning, with less of a teacher’s time spent on discipline issues.”
Grade specific videos and lessons in The BE KIND Break are released monthly with a specific emphasis on one of ten pledge skills from The Be Kind Pledge™. For example, “Be Respectful” was the focus of August. When teachers access The BE KIND Break, they are virtually greeted by a member of THE BE KIND CREW who introduces teachers and students to a “BE KIND Move of the Month™” and a preview of that month’s social studies, civics, language arts, science, and math worksheets, which are fillable online or print-ready. There is even a “healthy habit” challenge for every month—August was about limiting screen time. The combination of hip hop dance with social and emotional learning work in harmony to create fun and engaging lessons that teach kids it’s cool to be kind from coast to coast.
In addition to the free resource, The Be Kind People Project offers a more comprehensive, premium online program, The BE KIND School™. Like The BE KIND Break, The BE KIND School takes a more complete approach to link evidence-based standards with academic enrichment. Teachers can access original worksheets, writing prompts, classroom discussions, crafts, book lists, games and so much more.
The BE KIND School program has been an amazing addition to our campus and really improved our school culture,” said Emily James, fifth grade teacher at Tavan Elementary School in the Scottsdale Unified School District. “The kids truly embrace the idea of being “kind kids” and it has greatly reduced our behavior problems. Having a different pledge skill each month makes it easy to implement into your classroom and keeps the kids interested because it always changing. I love the way our students light up when you tell them “Thank you for being kind”. They know it is big deal and work hard to be recognized for that.”
All content within virtual programs are based on national academic standards, STEAM and have been vetted by The Be Kind Education Council, a volunteer team of educators.
Founded in 2011, The Be Kind People Project is a charitable nonprofit based in Phoenix, Arizona focused on teaching positive solutions for conflict and the skills of being a kind person. Kindness is at the core of how people of all ages respect, communicate with, and treat others. Because meaningful character education is an essential pillar of effective social, emotional, and academic learning, The Be Kind People Project provides students with an evidence-based learning approach so they will understand what TO do instead of what NOT to do. Based on a Pledge of 10 kindness skills, The Be Kind People Project offers school assemblies, online learning programs, after school and summer classes, leadership conferences, school gardens, community service projects and family engagement programs. Most programs are led by members of THE BE KIND CREW, a group of 65 professional urban dancers and educators, who teach the skills of kindness to life through music, dance, and spoken word. The Be Kind People Project has nearly one million contacts annually with students, their teachers and their families nationwide.