For the second straight year, schools in Valley View School District 365U will engage in random acts of kindness over the next few months as part of the VVSD Pay It Forward 365 campaign.
“Our goal is to have students experience the positive feeling of giving and receiving kindness,” said Michele Bochnak, VVSD’s Community Outreach Coordinator. “How students feel about themselves is very important in the classroom and in the school community.”
Among activities planned:
• During ISAT testing March 4-7, kindergarten through 2nd grade students at Hermansen Elementary School in Romeoville will show their support for 3rd through 5th graders by creating posters, letters and banners of encouragement. In April, the older students will show their support by creating books using their younger counterparts as characters.
• Romeoville High School will “Take A Stand” the week of March 10-14.
Activities for the week will include an anti-bullying poster contest, daily dress-up themes, daily announcements and the tracing of hands on a giant poster March 14 as students pledge to “lend a hand, take a stand.” A common theme heard throughout the week will be “if you witness something you wouldn’t want to happen to you, let the people involved know that’s not OK at our school.”
• From March 17 to 28 at Oak View Elementary School in Bolingbrook, students will write thank you notes to members of the Bolingbrook police and fire departments. They will also conduct a food, shampoo, soap, shaving cream and toiletry drive for Power Connection and will “pass a smile forward” to nursing home patients and staff by creating special messages about their school and themselves.
• March 19-21, students at B.J. Ward Elementary School in Bolingbrook will learn about Pay It Forward 365 through classroom presentations that will include lists of related activities and books for children. Throughout the following three weeks (not including Spring Break) students will be encouraged to document and submit any behaviors or actions they see that cause them to smile. Not only will all of the documentation be posted in the hallway for all to see, but three of the top contributing classes will also be direct participants in a to-be-determined fun reward during an all-school assembly on April 24.
• Beverly Skoff Elementary School in Romeoville has a variety of activities planned during the week of March 24.
On Monday of that week families will launch a drive for non-perishable food items for a local food pantry, while teachers conduct “read-alouds” using books related to acts of kindness. On Tuesday, students will make kindness cards.Thursday they will fill out “what would you do?” sheets explaining how they would help a friend in various situations. And on Friday, each class will come up with a random act of kindness they can perform to make someone else’s day brighter.
• Pay it Forward Week will be April 21-25 at Jonas Salk Elementary School in Bolingbrook.
On Monday, students will be given “Pay It Forward” bracelets when they do something kind for someone else.Thursday will feature a “kindness pledge.” Friday students will be asked to bring in at least one canned or dry good for the DuPage Township Food Pantry.
On Tuesday students will write down names they have been called that made them feel bad. Those names will be shredded and disposed. Students will then write on paper links names that make them feel good. The links will become part of a school-wide “kindness chain.”
Wednesday is “Building a Kinder School” Day. Students will receive a paper brick and will be asked to write down what they can do to make the school a kinder place. The bricks will be used to build a wall in the school cafeteria.