In the spirit of South Colonie Central School District’s 75th-anniversary celebrations, a Roessleville kindergarten class undertook a heartwarming project that showcased the essence of kindness. As part of the district-wide initiative encouraging 75 acts of kindness leading up to the 75th day of school, these students engaged in a crafting a ‘Kindness Quilt’ that beautifully reflected their understanding of compassion and goodwill.
Inspired by the book, Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson, teachers Heather Daigneault, Racquel Cunningham, and Katrina Graham, guided their students through meaningful discussions about the profound impact of small acts of kindness. The poignant quote from the book, “Each little thing we do goes out, like a ripple, into the world,” resonated deeply with the children, sparking a desire to spread kindness throughout their classroom, school and larger school community.
Heather Daigneault shared insights into the project, explaining that students took on various roles in creating the quilt. Some colored pictures, while others expressed their thoughts on kindness. The result was a stunning display in the hallway that showcased the collective efforts of the kindergarten class. “The students were very proud of themselves after seeing each of their pieces come together into a beautiful quilt,” said Daigneault .“Each piece of the quilt represented a unique perspective on kindness, demonstrating the ripple effect that simple acts can have on the broader community,” added Cunningham.
Daigneault and Cunningham have integrated kindness into their daily classroom routines beginning early this school year. Their goal being to foster a supportive and caring environment within their classroom. Morning meetings became a platform for students to greet each other, learn about their peers and engage in collaborative activities. The teachers, modeling respectful communication and active listening skills, observed the positive impact of their efforts as students eagerly embraced kindness in their interactions.
The ripple effect was evident in one noteworthy incident where a student, feeling self-conscious about wearing glasses, received an uplifting comment from a classmate – “you look beautiful with your glasses on.” This simple act triggered a cascade of kindness within the classroom, as other students followed suit in expressing affirmations to their peers. Daigneault and Cunningham reveled in witnessing their lessons in kindness become second nature to their students.
Daigneault reflects upon this experience by stating “Our classroom is our own little family, and we love seeing students show kindness to each other, their teachers and people throughout the school.” Now, the ‘Kindness Quilt’ stands to remind passers-by of the importance of creativity and compassion; as well as being a symbolic reminder of the importance of kindness, and how it continues to be an integral aspect of the South Colonie community.