Join us for the 5th Annual Kindness in Chalk Anti-Bullying Movement on Monday, October 1, 2018!
October is National Bullying Awareness Month. There’s a lot that happens in our schools and our society that could benefit from a little kindness. Bullying awareness is crucial and important – we need to talk to our kids about how to handle situations, we need to intervene, we need to stand up for what is right. But what this movement strives to do is to combat bullying with the most valuable virtue of all…the virtue that can come in the form of a hug, a compliment, a silent recognition…the virtue we must teach day in and day out. KINDNESS.
BE KIND. TEACH KINDNESS. This is our job.
Bullying – be it in schools, the workplace or online – can have lasting, lifetime implications. But without being in the schools to intervene directly, what can we do to help? Sometimes all a person needs to hear is something uplifting and positive to get through a hard day or week. On Kindness in Chalk day, students, parents, teachers, neighbors, business owners, kids, adults (soooo…basically anyone) works together to spread kindness by covering the sidewalks of school grounds (or neighborhoods, parks, trails, your own driveway, etc) with positive words, phrases, quotes and images that speak of love, peace, hope and acceptance with the intention of bringing smiles to the faces that need it the most. Consider this an open invitation for YOU to make an impactful difference on someone’s day (or week, or year, or life). And, hey, who doesn’t love playing with sidewalk chalk?!
Kindness in Chalk: An Anti-Bullying Movement started in 2014 after I was inspired by the smiles of random strangers as they passed my daughter’s sidewalk chalk scribbles telling them to “Have a Happy Day!” Those smiles changed the way they walked down my street and hopefully carried them even farther with their chins held high. So simple, yet so meaningful. Sometimes you just need to hear something positive to turn your slump into a stride. 2014 was also the year I sent my oldest to kindergarten. Sending your child off into a sea of strangers is always a trying exercise because you only want the best for them. You want them to be surrounded by happiness and good and protection. And you also want to let them learn to fly…without you. Sadly, this is not always the case. Bullying is a very serious problem in our country right now. So during National Bullying Awareness month, we make a difference without being too intrusive. We lift spirits without exposing blame. We put in an effort to distribute kindness and love equally without complexity or confusion.
We spread kindness with sidewalk chalk. It’s as simple and powerful as that.
- First things first, get permission. I suggest emailing your school principal to get the OK to chalk the school sidewalks with kindness (see a sample email here).
- Next, get people involved! Contact your parent friends. Talk to your PTO. Involve some teachers. Drop a note to the school counselor. Post flyers around the school. Send out emails, contact people on social media, do what you’ve got to do to get some people together to chalk kindness on that day. There are no rules – do what works for your community and have fun with it.
- Enter your school on our map (coming soon) or join the Facebook event page (coming soon). Simply fill out this short form to register your location and we will get your pin added to the online map. Let’s fill ‘er up again this year!
- Collect chalk. Cheapest chalk I’ve seen so far is at Walmart and Costco.
- Feel free to print off this flyer to hang next to a bucket of chalk and leave it on the school sidewalk or post around the school hallways a few weeks before the date. If you need a flyer to edit and/or translate, a Word document flyer is available here.
- On the day of the event, visit your school or location of choice and douse the grounds with inspiration. Feel free to leave the bucket of chalk behind with this printable flyer (editable flyer here) so people can write at their leisure. Need some great ideas for what to chalk? Check out the photos and videos from past years.
- Let’s see your photos! If you post pictures on social media, please be sure to tag them with #KINDNESSINCHALK. We’d love to see all of your handiwork and heartfelt messages. You can also send your photos directly to me at [email protected] OR post it on the MinneMama Adventures Facebook page or the Kindness in Chalk event page (coming soon).
Through the years, we have worked together to bring colorful words of joy and hope to countless little important lives. And this year we will do it again!
Join us – it only takes one sidewalk and one message to bring one million smiles.