They say kindness is contagious. If that’s the case, no one who works at Lefler Middle School is immune.
During a recent 10-day span, Lefler staff participated in “Kindness Blitz,” which encouraged the recognition of co-workers who perform random acts of kindness.
When someone “caught” a colleague doing anything that made Lefler a better place to be, they gave that person a t-shirt that read, “In a world where you can be anything, be kind - Lefler Middle School, Building a Community of Learners.” They took a photo of the person with the t-shirt and a “kindness card” they also received, which described their good deed. Then that person was required to repeat the same process with another co-worker within 24 hours.
By the end, every staff member at Lefler was sporting a kindness t-shirt. Their photos and kindness cards were displayed in the staff lounge.
The idea came from Jan McKeown, Lefler’s instructional technology coach.
“In a climate like this, I think the most important statement is to take care of each other,” she said. “I don’t know how anyone can argue this.”
Erin Pauley, a speech pathologist at the school, said the kindness campaign was a great way to acknowledge selfless acts that are sometimes taken for granted. “It was anytime we saw someone go the extra mile - not doing something they have to, but they choose to,” she said.
Here are a few examples from the kindness cards:
“You have a natural ability to build relationships with students. Please never stop smiling everywhere you go.”
“I appreciate the patience and kindness you show to our kids and staff. Your calm demeanor is a great example for me.”
“You are a perfect example of a kind person. I always know our students are in great hands when they are working with you. You model kindness in your everyday actions by responding quickly to student needs and coming up with ways to help and support even when it is hard.”
Sixth-grade math and science teacher Adam Lempka said it wasn’t only Lefler staff who reaped the benefits of the “Kindness Blitz.”
“The kids were wondering and asking what we were doing, so you get to have that conversation, as well,” he said.
Published: November 29, 2017, Updated: November 29, 2017