Making a Difference: Local school students perform 10,000 acts of kindness

Published: Feb. 5, 2018 at 9:27 PM CST
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Inside Marion Hall at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic School in Monona, 5th graders like Robbie Kirschbaum and Sofi Blahnik are teaming up with pre-schoolers to help them learn lessons that could last them a lifetime.

The students are all making Valentine's Day cards for other kids who are in the hospital. But the Valentine's Day cards are just a small part of what Principal Callie Meiller calls 10,000 random acts of kindness. Meiller said, "We just wanted to highlight what we do all year round here ... and just showcase how great our kids are."

The day begins with each child taking a slip of paper out of a large aquarium with a reminder of how he or she can do something kind.

Meiller read a slip one student drew: "It says, say good morning to five people. Hold the door open for five people. Do you think you could do that when you go to the library?"

The message for the kids is that kindness doesn't require monumental change. Sometimes, it's the littlest things that make the biggest difference.

Meiller said, "If I hold the door for somebody, if I smile and say hello to somebody, if I make eye contact, that speaks volumes. Having them understand that those little acts can be great, I think it's really important for them to know that."

And it's something Meiller hopes sticks with her students for years to come.

In addition to the slips of paper and the Valentine's Day cards, the kids also made kindness rocks, dog toys for an animal shelter, and messages for residents of a senior living facility. Over the course of two weeks, the students reached their goal of performing 10,000 random acts of kindness.

We heard about this story thanks to a Making a Difference nomination. If you know someone, or an organization making a difference, please click on the nominations link attached to this story to let us know about them.