Be Kind...

Be Kind.

Two simple words.  One simple message.

Founded from a tragic accident, but inspiring greatness and kind acts in all of us.

If you never read another one of my posts or have never read one before, I hope you will take the time to read this one.

Josh Stevens
 Josh was the kindest of kind, with a "heart as big as a lion".  Sadly, one month before he was to turn 13 years old, his life was cut all too short in a tragic accident.

You see, I didn't know Josh, but thankfully, through his parents, Josh's legacy of kindness lives on through the


 These two simple words are inspiring greatness and kind acts all around our school district and beyond.

Josh's family created this foundation not only for Josh's legacy to live on, but to inspire kind acts in others.
Their mission is
"To recognize and celebrate heartfelt kind acts."

Their belief is
"Genuine kindness born in the heart of a child 
deserves celebration."


What a better world we would all live in if everyone took just a few more minutes to
 Be Kind
More Often

You can learn about The Josh Stevens Foundation by watching this video.


At our school, a staff member who notices a student being kind fills out a form and submits it to our principal.  These students are recognized at our morning opening and are invited to spin the prize wheel in the office.  Prizes on the wheel range from a golden coupon redeemable for an item at the school snack shack to a Be Kind shirt, as well as a variety of other things.
Students are then photographed with their prize and then the form and their photo are hung on the Be Kind wall in our main hallway.

Your school can contact the foundation here and get your own Kindness Revolution started,
or you can start your own revolution.

The Josh Stevens Foundation has a large selection of "Be Kind" items that you 
can purchase at their online store.

 Their selection of shirts is always cycling through and they are constantly coming up with newer 
and cuter ones.  All of the shirts say "Be Kind" on the front (like these worn by some of my favorite peeps!)



 and on the back they have a creative and fun message, like these






Thanks to Allison for providing some of  these pics!  Allison works for the foundation and is a teacher, too!

If you are a school or organization, you can have your shirts personalized with your own message or slogan
on the back.

SOOOOOOOOOOOO... who wants to win their very own BE KIND shirt?

Enter the Rafflecopter below and if you are selected as the winner, you'll get to have your pick of any t-shirt from the Josh Stevens Foundation store!  How great is that?!?!?!


 
And remember...
A little spark of kindness can put a colossal burst of sunshine into someone's day!
BE KIND! 

28 comments

  1. Just this morning, a coworker texted me to see if I was doing ok. She had thought of me several times during the morning hours, and felt the need to ask. I, having a heavy heart full of worry and stress, broke down into tears! How did she know? It was exactly what I needed to start my day in a whole new way. I took a morning walk to clear my thoughts, and returned home with a renewed sense of peace and happiness knowing someone out there was thinking of me and took the time to care! God works in wondrous ways!

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  2. My classroom motto " Kinds Words Only!" Love this..what a wonderful family to be able to share through such a tragedy. wendy 1stgradefireworks@gmail.com 1stgradefireworks

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  3. What a beautiful legacy Josh has left for humankind. My class regularly focuses on RAK. We begin our countdown to summer on MLK's birthday by learning about RAK. You can read the whole post on my blog, but in a nutshell, we just perform these acts at school, home, and in the community. Our huge hearts are filled now and we will continue posting our mini hearts on our bulletin board until we leave for summer. I believe that we have to start with ourselves and then our students and our own children will follow.

    Janine
    faithfulinfirst.blogspot.com

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  4. I love this post, thanks so much for sharing!! It sounds like he was a great kid and will be missed by many!! I love the idea of recognizing students school wide for being kind. We need that at my school! We have a very challenging population and spend a lot of time dealing with difficult behavior issues. It would be great to highlight more kind behaviors!! I'm going to pass this along to my admin.

    Katie :)

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  5. So many of us see acts of kindness everyday in our students. To recognize it takes that extra effort by each of us. I will be taking these thoughts with me this week as I pass through the various school halls and will give it my best effort as a Substitute teacher to recognize those acts and promote them to the students and their teachers. Thank you for sharing this great organization.

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  6. Oh how sad and wonderful I love this. I am going to mention it to my daughter. I think her sorority needs to get shirts. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Oops I forgot to tell about an act of kindness. When I was going through my divorce so many people helped me. One of my friends had my children and I go to her house at the coast for a much needed vacation. She took us all around and paid for everything. I could never thank her enough.

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  7. So sweet! My school recognizes different character traits weekly, but I love this idea! Definitely sharing with my counselor!

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  8. As a sub I see so many children doing kind things for others. At times someone is crying due to no one playing with them and some sweet child will zoom over and get them to play. Many of the children say such kind things to me and give me hugs whenever they see me even when I'm not subbing. So I randomly hand out brag tags and other things to return the kindness! The brag tags say Kindness Counts!

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  9. In a third grade class, one of my special needs students asked me to tie his shoes. Before I could even bend over, another student did it for him! This girl also told my student that she will teach him how to tie his own shoes! So sweet!

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  10. What a great post, we did RAK the whole month of February and read We Are Bucket Fillers, the lessons have really made a lasting impression.

    Thanks for the reminder to always be kind!

    Deanna
    A Primary Owl

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  11. Our school guidance counselor began a Kindness Links Us Together campaign. When an adult would spot a scholar showing kindness, that adult would hand the kid a slip of paper. The child would record their name and their kindess.We displayed the links in our hallway. We reached over 500 links and the principal bought us ice cream yesterday. I have noticed more children displaying acts of kindness. It works.....Thanks

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  12. What a great post. I further explored the website, looked up about this remarkable young man and his legacy. I, too, believe in teaching about bucket filling (as others have mentioned) and teaching kindness in the classroom. I am all about teaching team building and praising compassion and kindness. Just recently, I was diagnosed with a progressive autoimmune disease. While I normally wouldn't tell my students' parents, I was having to have surgery and began walking with a cane...not to mention I was returning to school 1 day before our field trip I had funded through DonorsChoose. I shared that I would need a little help on the field trip and ended up with 17 chaperones who managed, assisted, got me a scooter, and handled any/all stress on a full day field trip to Sea World! They didn't have to do that, and being military members they had to take off work, get the funds, etc. when otherwise they've struggled to be involved. It was amazing! A random act of kindness I did recently was finish funding a dear friend (and colleague)'s DonorsChoose project so she could have the materials to prepare for next year's students. I made the donation anonymously. :)

    Thank you for the opportunity to have a chance at getting something from the Josh Stevens Foundation's store. I can't wait to pass on information about this organization.

    Melanie
    melaniemorgan.edd@gmail.com

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  13. Love this idea. I want to pass this on to the other teachers at my school. We all need a little kindness!
    Thanks!

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  14. I think that this is so powerful. What a great legacy that Josh has left for us to emulate. I am always reminding and redirecting students to "Be Problem Solvers" "Be Happy" and recently "Be Strong" in the wake of the nearby Boston Marathon nightmare. Now I will add "Be Kind" to our daily routines.

    I plan on sharing this with our school social worker.

    Now for a personal act of kindness -- I love, love, love to knit. I make all different types of newborn hats, including traditional designs, but I really love to make special ones, like "Despicable Me" , a newborn ducky, apples, pumpkins, bunnies, cupcake, etc.... I donate them to a NICU at a local hospital.

    Jeanne J28ber@gmail.com

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  15. I just implemented a Random Act of Kindness Week at my school. Students wrote down some of their acts as well and drew from a prize box. It would have been nice to have the t-shirts last week. Next year we will purchase those for sure! Thanks for sharing this post. It's so important to teach kindness in the schools.

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  16. Wow what an awesome idea! The other day one of my students did not like his lunch. He ate what he could and got rid of the rest. A few minutes later he was holding an orange cup. I looked at him and he told me that one of the other students had given it to him.

    Crystal Shepherd
    lucytumnus@gmail.com
    The lamppost in 1st grade math

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  17. Thanks for sharing - this is definitely a message of which we all need to be reminded.

    Love to Learn

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  18. Thank you for sharing this - what a wonderful family, My co-workers & I try to supply needed items for our students at school (clothing, personal care items, etc). dbednarsk@yahoo.com

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  19. Thank you for posting this story. I have a son who will be 12 in June. Just two simple words...

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  20. Love this! I also enjoy calling attention to those who include others, give genuine compliments,defend a friend in need. At our school, "Bucket Filling" is part of our Olweus Bully Prevention program. :)

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  21. What a wonderful legacy... Just what the world needs: kindness! :)
    lparce@hotmail.com

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  22. I organized a drive to collect over $3000 for PS 317 in Rockaway Park, queens after Hurricane Sandy. I want children to understand we have a responsibility to be kind and help those in need.

    Kari
    Aftershockrut@comcast.net

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  23. I always take the time every morning to greet each human being I see with a smile and a Good Morning :-) Love the t-shirt idea !!!
    Karen
    tommysmom0206@yahoo.com

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  24. I have a friend who is going through a tough time. I always wonder how she can handle it all! I know it is important for me to check in on her several times during the week just so she knows I care about her!

    kellybrown28021@gmail.com

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  25. What a story! So inspiring! Once a man bought my family breakfast at a restaurant we were in. Never saw who he was...just a random act of kindness!!
    Gina
    Beach Sand and Lesson Plans

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  26. Every other week I purchase the meal of whoever is behind me in the line at whatever food place I am at hoping that they will return the kindness to the person behind them. My classroom all does Random Acts of Classroom Kindness. We pull an activity out of a hat and perform it for the office staff, nurses, other classrooms, custodians, etc. The kiddos love doing this and it brings a little cheer to whomever happens to get pulled out of the hat!
    Thanks for sharing this message. It's so important to model.
    Cara

    Kindergarten Boom Boom

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  27. We truly enjoyed reading your blog, its fun and entertaining, but most importantly heartfelt. We are happy when we find other people out there who care about what truly matters. Be Kind. Sincerely, Ana from www.BioBubblePets.com

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