During Children’s Mental Health Week recently, we were encouraged to start teaching our kids, if we weren’t already, to ‘spread a little kindness’.
There are more and more cases of children, as young as nine, committing suicide. Shocking to even contemplate – but it is actually happening. As the main source of their worries seem to stem from bullying, it really is time that we take this more seriously and start focusing on how our children treat others – above all else.
Do you focus on kindness with your children? Do you encourage them to reach out to those children who seem lonely or quiet? Life is very fast as we all know and it’s hard enough to get everything we need to get done in a day, perhaps this is something that is just not focused on enough? Sure we all teach our kids to share but do we really talk to them about issues like bullying, loneliness, exclusion, social differences etc? Could we be doing much more to teach them about spotting the signs of a child who is being shunned or excluded by peers? Do we read books that encourage kindness and thoughtfulness?
I have to say I don’t think I do as much in this vein as I could. On saying that, I bought such a book when my eldest was 4 – but haven’t yet read it to my youngest who’s also 4. I have no idea why? Life is busy and I just forgot I suppose! I will definitely start doing it now though. It really is a fantastic thing to encourage. I had to order it from America because I simply couldn’t find anything similar here but it’s now available on Amazon. It’s called Have you filled A Bucket today.
It’s a really heart warming read and encourages your child to visualise everyone with a bucket; you can choose whether to fill someone’s bucket with kindness and love (at the same time filling your own) or you can choose to empty their bucket by making them sad. It’s just a really simple effective way to encourage mindfulness, empathy and kindness.