Get ready for the 100 Acts of Kindness Project! The project is hosted by Toddler Approved and Coffee Cups and Crayons. It starts each year on Martin Luther King Day and ends on Valentine’s Day. You can start at any time, though. And the 100 Acts of Kindness Project isn’t just for parents with young children.
My family has participated in 100 Acts of Kindness on some level each year. We participated with my kids and kids-in-law from 2011-2014 and with my granddaughter, Zoey, in 2015-2017.
The world needs some extra kindness, and this project is a wonderful reminder to be kinder to the people and world around us. There are weekly challenges to help give inspiration and ideas, although you can structure your 100 Acts of Kindness however you wish. And if 100 Acts of Kindness doesn’t work for you, just do as many kind acts as possible. As Mother Teresa said: “If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.” Really, just do what you can.
Following are some resources for doing 100 Acts of Kindness Project with your unique family, whatever your children’s ages are.
100 Acts of Kindness for Families with Young Children
I think early childhood might be the easiest stage of development to introduce children to 100 Acts of Kindness. It’s definitely the perfect time to start … as early as when your child is a toddler. You’ll find LOTS of ideas for activities each week if you join 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge Facebook Group and follow the weekly kindness challenges through the 100 Acts of Kindness posts at Toddler Approved and Coffee Cups and Crayons.
We started with the 100 Acts of Kindness Project with my granddaughter, Zoey, when she was a 14-month-old toddler. You can see what we did in my post on “Including a Toddler in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge.” You’ll find more in my follow-up post “Using Montessori Principles in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge.”
While Zoey was still a toddler, at age 2, we had “Focusing on Toddler Manners in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge.” and “Completing 100 Acts of Kindness (Toddler Manners Challenge) and Starting 100+ Acts of Kindness.”
When Zoey was 3 years old, we had fun “Encouraging 100 Acts of Kindness with the Kindness Elves” and “Fun with Kindness Elves, 100 Acts of Kindness, and the Kind Words Challenge.”
At Living Montessori Now, I have a post with Montessori-inspired 100 Acts of Kindness activities and resources: Montessori-Inspired Kindness. Because Montessori emphasizes following the child’s interests, you’ll find activities for children through adults based on interests.
100 Acts of Kindness for Families with Children Who Are Pre-Teens through Adults (or for Adults in General)
This is where the 100 Acts of Kindness Project gets tricky. As I said, Montessori emphasizes following interests at any age. I still use that principle if my adult children ask for my opinion and even in deciding what I want to do. Pre-teens through young adults are often very busy with their own projects and activities. Volunteer projects are wonderful for developing compassion, strengthening leadership skills, and even building resumes. At the same time, you want the project to be something your child wants to do.
I think it’s important for older children to choose their level of involvement. That way, the project will have much more meaning and will be more likely to develop compassion and other positive qualities you want to see in your children. If your child just wants to focus on remembering to be kind, that’s alright. I think that’s one of the best things about the 100 Acts of Kindness Project. Even though I try to be kind as a regular part of my life, I appreciate the reminder to do something extra whenever I can between Martin Luther King Day and Valentine’s Day. It’s 25 days rather than 30 days as in my typical 30-Day Challenges, but it’s still long enough to help develop the habit of focusing on being kind.
Try a Little Kindness (here) and Join the 100 Acts of Kindness Project at Living Montessori Now (with the link to a 100 Acts of Kindness chart that works well for older children and adults) have lots of ideas for older children and adults. Be sure to join 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge Facebook Group and check out the weekly challenges and ideas given there.
For example, if the kindness challenge is to show some love to your environment, you could be like the star of this video at any age!
Many activities can be simple and spontaneous. My family has done simple activities ranging from eGreetings or Skype greetings to relatives to helping elderly people who are having difficulty in stores. If you focus on finding a kindness project or projects that your individual children are interested in – and that they choose – you’re more likely to have a fulfilling and successful experience. If you or your child(ren) choose a large project, you could have an amazing experience.
As part of the 100 Acts of Kindness Project 2014, my daughter and I shared “Operation Beautiful Meets 100 Acts of Kindness Project” or “Family Fun with 100 Acts of Kindness and Operation Beautiful.” That was an especially meaningful project for us.
List of My 100 Acts of Kindness Posts
My 100 Acts of Kindness Posts:
- Join the 100 Acts of Kindness Project (2011)
- Try a Little Kindness (2012)
- Kindness Challenge #2: Montessori-Inspired Kindness (2012)
- Montessori-Inspired 100 Acts of Kindness Project (2013)
- Operation Beautiful Meets 100 Acts of Kindness Project (2014)
- Family Fun with 100 Acts of Kindness and Operation Beautiful (2014)
- Including a Toddler in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge (2015)
- Using Montessori Principles in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge (2015)
- Focusing on Toddler Manners in the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge (2016)
- Completing 100 Acts of Kindness (Toddler Manners challenge) and Starting 100+ Acts of Kindness (2016)
- Encouraging 100 Acts of Kindness with the Kindness Elves (2017)
- Fun with Kindness Elves, 100 Acts of Kindness, and the Kind Words Challenge (2017)
Please join my family and me in the 100 Acts of Kindness Project! I’d love to hear what you have planned! 🙂
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