Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we’re playing host to a stop along The Children’s Book Review tour starring a very special book that speaks to a subject everyone could use a reminder of from time to time, let alone a heavy dose to the world all things considered. From the sound of things, it’s going to really spark that reminder that kindness starts from within, whether you’re just starting out in life or seeing the other side of the hill. Let’s take a proper introduction to today’s title in the spotlight and then check out a SPECIAL GUEST POST from the author about the TOP 5 WAYS TO SHOW KINDNESS!
The Kindness Machine
Purple Butterfly Press
About the book...
Creative and artistic 2nd-grade teacher, Mr. Wilson, wants to teach his students about kindness. Mr. Wilson creates The Kindness Machine, a special machine that shows the students exactly what they can do to bring kindness to their classroom and into their hearts! Instead of telling his students to “be kind,” which is something children hear from a very early age, they learn exactly what they can do in their own lives by pressing the special buttons. In the end, Mr. Wilson teaches his students that they each have their own Kindness Machine within them to help make kind decisions for others and themselves.
This creative, innovative, and fun teaching method will direct kids to be kind to one another in their classroom and beyond. The book includes discussion questions to help the reader consider not only kindness towards others but also kindness towards themselves, a lesson that is not always taught.
The Kindness Machine is a practical and innovative tool for teaching emotional literacy, kindness, and acceptance of self and others.
Available in hardcover, paperback, and as an ebook.
GUEST POST with Author Christina DanKert
Top 5 Ways to Show Kindness
Kindness. The word seems to be popping up everywhere right now. In magazines, on billboards, coffee mugs and t-shirts galore! Is this because more people realize the value of kindness, or because recently, kindness is missing? Oftentimes, we notice or fixate on unkind actions and comments more than the beautiful random acts of kindness that add up over time. Kindness to others is what we begin teaching our children, students, nieces, nephews, etc. from the moment they are little. We often emphasize the importance of kindness when sharing toys, saying hello to a friend, and using manners. All of these are extremely important, but what about self kindness? Self-love and kindness towards ourselves are as important as kindness to others.
Below are 5 ways to practice kindness. You will find two kindness actions towards yourself, sandwiched between three kindness actions towards others. The reason for this is that I feel you must first show yourself kindness, then show others and circle back to yourself in order to successfully repeat the process. You will notice that each example can be used for both children and adults. This is the beauty of kindness. Regardless of age, race, gender, religion, culture, children and adults can celebrate kindness together. Kindness does not need to cost anything and does not need to take a lot of time. One small act of kindness can change someone's entire day.
1. Start your day with kindness using positive affirmations.
2. Invite and include others in activities, games, conversations.
3. Smile, wave and acknowledge neighbors, friends, classmates.
4. When you think of a compliment, be sure to say it.
5. End your day with kindness by showing gratitude towards yourself.
Let’s dive a little deeper into each of the five kindness actions. Oftentimes we jump out of bed and begin our days in a rushed motion that doesn’t start until our head hits the pillow. I am guilty of this as well. Taking one or two minutes in the morning to slow down, breathe and begin with a positive affirmation can change your day. There are a variety of affirmation cards and journals but one of the easiest ways to begin this practice is through the use of sticky notes. Write a positive affirmation such as “I am brave”, “I am strong”, or “I am enough” and place it on your mirror, nightstand or laptop as a daily reminder.
The concept of inviting and including others is so simple but often causes great stress to those excluded. If we teach children to notice another child who needs a friend, my goal is that they will notice when a peer in highschool or further down the road, when a coworker needs an invite as well.
Smile, wave and acknowledge. All three of those actions seem simple enough and most children are very good at them. Of course we have to teach children safety rules, but it is refreshing to watch a random group of kids meet at a park with their parents and strike up a conversation and immediately begin playing. During that same moment the adults are often on their phones or avoiding eye contact. You do not need to spend your entire day striking up new conversations, but a simple smile and wave acknowledges another person in a kind way.
Have you ever thought of a compliment but are too embarrassed or get too busy to share it? I believe we do this more frequently than we may even realize. Once again, if we can slow down and share a compliment to another person, it not only makes the recipient feel good but it makes us feel good as well. It is important to teach children to give compliments beyond physical appearance. As adults, we can model this by complimenting a child’s perseverance with a challenging task or acknowledging their bravery when they tried something new.
Finally, at the end of your day, take another deep breath, and offer a moment of gratitude. This gratitude statement can be spoken out loud, kept internally or written in a journal. When you pause and reflect on what or who you are thankful for, you often notice those small moments more frequently.
I invite you to visit my website to download free kindness activities, read my blog and order your copy of The Kindness Machine. Thank you so much for reading and helping spread kindness. https://christinadankert.com/
About the author...
Christina Dankert is a second-grade teacher. She has a passion for literacy and believes that we can change the world by reading to the children in our lives. This is her debut picture book. She lives in Sylvania, Ohio, with her husband, Chad, and their two children. She has dreamed of collaborating with her husband to merge their two professions of educator and artist into one meaningful product. The Kindness Machine allowed that dream to come true.
Learn more about Christina at www.christinadankert.com.
Enter for a chance to win a classroom set of The Kindness Machine or one of five individual copies!
One (1) winner receives:
A classroom set (30 copies) of The Kindness Machine will be sent directly to the winners' school of choice, along with autographed bookplates personalized for each student and the teacher.
Five (5) winners receive:
A copy of The Kindness Machine, with bookplates autographed by author Christina Dankert
The Kindness Machine: Book Giveaway
Special thanks to Bianca at The Children's Book Review for the chance to bring this tour to you and to the author for the special guest post. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. Be sure to check out the rest of the stops on the tour for more bookish fun!
Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!