Saturday, February 7, 2015

"Kindness Matters" at #nspire2015

Our Kindness Week was a huge hit at Monteith.  Check out Monteith’s inspiring students in the links below!  

Growing our Kindness Tree!
Rhonda Walker and Local 4 News helping kick off The Great Kindness Challenge!

Nothing inspire me more than our students and their varied and inspirational viewpoints.  
Friday night, Grosse Pointe Public Schools hosted #nspire2015.  An event where 30 inspiring students came together to give a series of short and inspiring talks in front of a live audience.  They were answering the question, “What is your vision for ______?”  All proceeds from this event will benefit the Michigan Eye Bank and help to raise awareness and support to the Michigan Organ Donor Registry.

This joyful event was filled with inspiration from extremely poised and powerful students who highlighted the importance of their vision with amazing eloquence.  Our school was proud to have Olivia, a Monteith 5th grader, who dazzled the audience with her inspiring talk about kindness. Check out her speech below!  
My Vision of the World:

Just a little Kindness

   My vision of the world is not very creative. It’s not mind blowing and it won’t cure cancer. You don’t have to spend millions of dollars to do it and it’s not time consuming. My vision of the world is where kindness overpowers meanness. Where a person doesn’t walk away when someone is feeling down or being rude. Instead, they think, how can I make this person’s day better? It doesn’t have to be a BIG thing. You don’t have to give them your X-Box One or iPad! It could be as little as a smile, a simple wave or some sweet words. In our everyday life, I think there are three things that get in the way of my vision where EVERYONE is kind. These are grumpiness, bullying, and jealousy.  By changing our responses and practicing a little kindness, we can achieve my goal!

      Grumpiness makes being kind a bit of a challenge. How many times have you been to the store, fast food drive thru or a restaurant and seen that one person who seems like they would rather be ANYWHERE but there? They are not pleasant to be around. Is it that hard to smile? It takes just as much effort to frown than smile! When I stumble upon these situations, I try to think, what’s going on in their life? Are they having a bad day? Did they have a rude customer? Instead of being rude back, just smile or give them a compliment. It just might turn their whole day around!

      Bullying is another situation that is hard to deal with. When people say mean things to you like, “You’re SO gross!” “My mom has a better fashion sense than you!” “You’re such a geek!” Try to let those words bounce off of you like a bouncy ball instead of letting them stick as peanut butter sticks to the roof of your mouth. Also try to kill them with kindness. This means giving smiles, compliments or maybe even telling them a joke to make them laugh. This doesn’t mean you should let people treat you badly, because they are the one causing all of this, not you. Remember to tell yourself, I am wonderful! I am awesome! I am loveable!

      Everyone experiences jealousy sometime in their life. It’s not a great emotion. You could feel jealous when your friend gets new shoes that you love and you want them really badly. Or maybe your friend got the part in the school play that you really wanted. Or your cousin is going on a once in a life time trip and you rarely go on vacations. Instead of ignoring or being mean to your friend, try being happy for them! Think about how nice they look or how hard they must’ve worked. And let them know you’re really glad for them!
      These are examples of things that get in the way of my vision of the world where everyone is kind to each other. So, all I’m trying to say is just be nice! Try adding a little kindness in everything you do. Start on your way home tonight - in the parking lot, at the store checkout, with your irritating little brother. It’s not rocket science! Anyone can do it! You don’t have to be popular, or the smartest person in your class. You don’t have to be athletic, have a lot of money or have a great fashion sense. It’s not always easy, but it’s worth the effort! And most of all, remember to SMILE….It’s contagious!

Many children and adults could learn from her powerful words and genuinely kind thoughts.  Olivia and so many other future leaders inspired us on Friday. I wish everyone had the chance to listen to the heartfelt messages that all of our #nspire2015 students shared.  I hope their message is heard and inspires us to follow their lead.  

Thank you #gpmonteith for The Great Kindness Challenge and #nspire2015 students who are leading the path towards a better future!

Enjoy the weekend and “Smile… It’s contagious!”


  1. I love this post! I love the idea of "Kindness Week" and I LOVE the talk that Olivia gave! Her message is wonderful, compassionate, and inspiring. She is truly someone that can change the world with her message.

    My favorite part about Kindness Week and this story is the opportunity that was provided to the students. From my experience teaching and my strong belief in the "awesomeness" of student, I think there are a lot of wonderful, compassionate, and inspiring children out there with the potential to change the world. They may not be able to summarize and deliver it as well as Olivia, but they do have important messages, passion, and the ability to change the world. Unfortunately the large majority of schools do not find ways for these students to "change the world" with their message. It breaks my heart that there are a ton of motivated, altruistic, and passionate students out there who are quietly sitting in rows of desks, working on worksheets, and taking tests. We need to find more ways to get them in positions to do "real" things and make a positive impact on the world.

    Kindness week should be mandatory everywhere. Schools should be finding every way possible to help foster compassion, passion, and altruism. Schools should be removing obstacles from students paths in an attempt to help them change the world.

    Thank you for giving these students the chance to change the world. Thank you for sharing this message and inspiring other educators and administrators to step up and do the same. Students deserve it. Our world needs it!

    1. Oliver,
      Thank you for the thoughtful comments. Olivia's message was amazing and she presented it with such passion. It was a great week for our school and we will continue to sustain the "kindness" energy! We all need to support and empower our children to change the world! Thanks for reading and making positive changes within the educational community.

  2. These words are truly inspiring to be a kinder and better person. Your students have given a wonderful message to try and change our attitudes and behavior towards one another. It has inspired me to share this with my colleagues and friends. We need to try and change our society to become more positive and kind.

    1. Amelia,
      So true... "we need to try and change our society to become more positive and kind." Thank you for commenting and support a kinder world.