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Most people have heard the phrase ‘random acts of kindness’, which refers to a selfless act of giving that results in the happiness of another person. Expressions like this are increasing in popularity around the world, as more people identify a deficiency in their lives that can only be fulfilled by altruism.
It seems we just can’t get enough of those addictive, feel-good emotions – and with good reason.
Scientific studies have shown that kindness has a great number of physical and emotional benefits, and that children require a healthy dose of these warm and fuzzy feels in order to flourish as healthy, happy, well-rounded individuals.
Patty O’Grady, PhD, is an expert in the areas of neuroscience, emotional learning, and positive psychology with special attention to the educational arena. She believes that “kindness changes the brain by the experience of kindness. Children and adolescents do not learn kindness by only thinking about it and talking about it. Kindness is best learned by feeling it so that they can reproduce it. Kindness is an emotion that students feel, and empathy is a strength that they share.”
A great number of benefits have been reported to support the theory of teaching kindness in schools:
It’s become quite clear that modern education must encompass more than just academics; that in order for children to develop into happy, confident, well-rounded individuals, matters of the heart must be taken seriously and nurtured as a matter of priority.