Monday, January 18, 2016

KINDNESS - Be Kind, Teach Kind

How to Be Kind, How to Teach Kind

Ms. Brigid here, from Merit School of Music  in Chicago. Thank you for joining me!

The title to my post may give the impression that I know what the answer is. Actually, I’m asking for your input. What songs, books, and activities do you use to support kindness in your Pre-K and Kindergarten classrooms?

Please use the "comments" feature, or write me directly:

As the temperatures dropped into the single digits, making recess impossible and post-school outside time unthinkable, kiddos have been coming to class displaying a higher degree of grouchiness and grousiness than usual. Meaningful and sincere kindness is being consistently modeled and encouraged in these classrooms, yet there is (sometimes) a spectacular disconnect.  

One of my schools (K-8) is involved in a “one school, one book” project, using R. J. Palacio’s book, Wonder, as a springboard to stimulate a discussion about kindness, compassion and empathy…and much more. After finding out about the book from a favorite Second Grade teacher, I checked it out at the Skokie Library and read the deeply moving story in quick order. It’s prompted a respectable amount of reflection, and I keep returning to a precept by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer promoted by a character in the book,  Mr. Browne, an insightful English teacher: When given the choice between being right or being kind, choose kind.

Choose to smile. Give the benefit of a doubt. Don’t rush to judgment. Look for, expect, and believe in the best. Help a stranger. Help a friend. Open a door. Open your heart.

Choose Kind: Two words easy to agree with, but harder to live. I’m not one for making New Year’s resolutions, but I’m going to let them be my guide this year.

Merit School of Music, Chicago
Call on Merit School of Music! Our onsite school is in the West Loop. We work in the schools throughout the area providing band, orchestra, percussion, choir, early childhood, and general music instruction with project-based units including Recorder, Music and Storytelling and Songwriting. We do great work! YoYo Ma is a supporter!

Chicago Families
Please come to Merit’s Storytime sessions. It’s free, fun, and facilitated by singers and storytellers Amy Lowe, Irica Baurer, Janet Janz, & Brigid Finucane. Stories and songs start at 11am, and we end with time for family networking. Storytime is be offered once a month on the 2nd Monday. The next session is February 8, 2016.

I am continually inspired by the Children’s Music Network (CMN) community, an international group of socially conscious musicians, educators, librarians, families, songwriters and good people, who “celebrate the positive power of music in the lives of children by sharing songs, exchanging ideas, and creating community.” Please visit CMN, and find a gathering in your region.

©2016 Brigid Finucane  * 847-213-0713 *

Blog History

June 2015. Summer Songs

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