Every day for many months a duck, I named Libbie, sits near the pool most of the day. Around 3-5pm “Freddie” appears and they usually swim a bit. Sometimes they come to the glass door and peck their beak which is funny because they seem to know me and I say “Hi”. Last week it was lightly raining and when I peered outside I could not believe my eyes! Libbie was swimming in the pool with fluffy baby duckies! I grabbed my phone to videotape this miracle to show my kids later. read more →

In the classroom of the Little Fish (2 years old) of Colégio Oceanus, this year we live in an atmosphere of Kindness. Bearing in mind the idea that the first years of life are essential in the development of the personality and in the internalization of values, this year we started a project in which children are encouraged to be kind, friendly, generous, and are valued, praised for these attitudes.

We started with the story “Have you filled your bucket today?” and, after the construction of the anthem, Kindness became a natural thing, inherent in everyday life. In the room, there is a Kindness tree, whose branches are filled with a heart-shaped leaf for every act of kindness. We also have the buckets, which are filled up according to good attitudes. read more →

From the Author
     – Jayneen Sanders

Book Title:
 You, Me and Empathy

Illustrator: Sofia Cardoso

For Ages: 3-9

Categories: empathy, compassion, kindness, anti-bullying, friendship

Related learning areas: Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)

Review of book: Click here for a book reading and review

About the book

‘You, Me and Empathy’ uses verse, beautiful illustrations and a little person called Quinn to model the meaning of empathy. Throughout the story, Quinn shows an abundance of understanding, compassion and kindness towards others. Showing empathy towards others is a learned trait and one to nurture and cherish with the children in our care. read more →

Book Title: You, Me and Empathy

Author: Jayneen Sanders

Illustrator: Sofia Cardoso

For Ages: 3-9

Category: empathy, compassion, kindness, diversity, tolerance, respect, character

Related learning areas: Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), feelings awareness, writing

A word from the author: Click here to view pages, resources and hear from the author

About the book

In this gem, young readers are invited to explore their feelings and discover their ability to understand not only their own emotions but also the feelings of others. Written in first-person narrative with every-day examples of situations that might cause uncomfortable feelings like worry, anger, sadness, or fright, this text with reflection questions sprinkled throughout is sure to spark and ignite some dynamic conversations about empathy, compassion and kindness.  read more →

I was at a garage sale and a little older lady picked up a book she wanted, but said she had left her car at Walgreens (a couple blocks away) as she wanted to walk on a nice sunny day. The lady holding the garage sale said “well leave the book here and I will hold it for you”. I looked up and said I will buy the book for you and asked her how much it was. She said she wanted 50 cents. I gave her the 50 cents and the little lady said I will find you and repay you and i will remember you. I said no need in paying me, it’s a gift. Maybe you can pay it forward to someone someday. read more →

Gratitude … goes beyond the “mine” and “thine” and claims the truth that all of life is a pure gift. In the past, I always thought of gratitude as a spontaneous response to the awareness of gifts received, but now I realize that gratitude can also be lived as a discipline. The discipline of gratitude is the explicit effort to acknowledge that all I am and have is given to me as a gift of love, a gift to be celebrated with joy.

– Henri J. M. Nouwen

Several years ago I had the opportunity to attend an education conference in San Francisco, CA. While I was there, I learned many exciting findings from the “science of happiness.” That weekend revolutionized my perspectives related to teaching and parenting. Since then I have been on a quest to create a happier classroom and to help other teachers do the same thing.

One lesson I learned at the conference pertains to the relationship between happiness and success. As recent research has shown, success does not always lead to happiness. Many of us know this from experience. For example, landing a highly coveted job and buying your dream home may not necessarily result in a blissful state. On the other hand, people who are happy tend to find success in school, at work, and in every domain in life. read more →

My friend and I spent a summer working at a salmon cannery in Alaska. We were driving back home on the Alaskan Highway, which is a two-lane road through some of the most remote land on planet earth. You are in the middle of nowhere with no way to contact help unless help comes to you. With that in mind, we hit a stretch of road, which had become slippery and we spun out and slammed our car into a cliff face, luckily avoiding sliding off to the right and down the hill, maybe not to be seen, or found for a long time.

We were 100 miles from a town to our north and 75 miles to the next town to our south. One car was close behind us (about 5 minutes) and ignored our frantic waves for help, about a half-hour later, a large truck came by and offered to take us for medical attention, but couldn’t help us with our car. read more →

Be Kind to Yourself Quote.
Kindness in the dictionary is defined as a noun, I tend to disagree. I first remember becoming aware of the importance of kindness when I was a small child. I had a difficult childhood due to severe bullying in the home by an older family member. Being an old soul in a young body, I sentimentally found solace in old movies where it all seemed so simple and joyful. Black and whites were a favourite and Frank Capra’s, ‘It’s a Wonderful Life,’ caught my special attention. Watching Jimmy Stewart’s character experience his world as if he had not been born, helped him to realise the impact his kindnesses had had on the people around him and how their world was so different and negative without him. read more →

After reading the book “How full is your bucket”, my youngest was 7 at the time and he showed how well he understood the process one night when we were out for dinner and he smoothly and gorgeously told our waitress how pretty she looked. Her face lit up like a Christmas tree and I am sure she will remember that forever. He turned to me and said “it’s alrighty mummy, I was just filling her bucket”.