25 Acts of Kindness for Kids

Do you know how to build positive mental health for kids? The postive psychology model gives an approach to holistically developing skills and mindsets for happiness. Acts of Kindness is one evidence backed activity for building positive emotions and social connection.

The PERMA+ model from Positive Psychology breaks down well-being into the categories of positive emotions, engagement, relationships, meaning, accomplishment plus physical activity, optimism, nutrition and sleep. Each of these categories have evidence-backed actions that can improve them.

For increasing positive emotions, acts of kindness is one strategy. Being kind to others makes us feel good. It’s also helpful for building relationships and social connection when you do things for others.

Many of these acts of kindness also help kids with autism in developing their social skills. Giving eye contact and smiling towards a friend is part of building friendships and being connected socially to people. Putting yourself in others’ shoes and thinking about what others are thinking is part of Social Thinking. This also can be built through Acts of Kindness and targets another social skill that is often difficult for kids with autism. If you’re writing a note or making a gift, talk about what that person would like – what are their interests? what are their favourite foods, colours and animals? Can you connect with what you know about that person in order to show you listen and care for them?

25 Acts of Kindness for Kids

  1. Give a smile
  2. Say something nice to a friend
  3. Say hi to a neighbour
  4. Say Thanks
  5. Open the door for someone
  6. Sit next to someone at lunch
  7. Give a hug
  8. Give a compliment
  9. Leave a positive note
  10. Pick up rubbish
  11. Listen to a friend
  12. Do a chore at home
  13. Laugh with a friend
  14. Share
  15. Send an encouraging note
  16. Share food with a friend
  17. Pick a flower and give it away
  18. Call a friend
  19. Clean up without being asked
  20. Send a card to a neighbour
  21. Smile
  22. Share a hug
  23. Play with someone lonely
  24. Support a charity
  25. Draw a picture for someone as a gift
acts of kindness bingo
Kindness Bingo

You can also download the Acts of Kindness for Kids bingo as a pdf in the free Resilience Journal for Kids. You’ll find it on page 18.

resilience journal including acts of kindness activity

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