People are often motivated by the desire to make a positive difference, and research has shown that this desire to show kindness has positive effects on mental health.
Research has found that kindness can help create a sense of belonging and reduce feelings of stress. And when directed toward oneself, it can help boost self-esteem and well-being. So as we celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Day on Feb. 17, think about how you can be kind to others and yourself while reading experiences and tis by Dallas ISD team members.
Glenda Clark, Skyline High School
I am chairperson for a group of teachers called B12. Who are We? We are a group of 12 leaders who have agreed to invoke change and foster a positive impact on our Skyline campus. Our goal is to create a space where not only teachers feel valued and welcomed, but also to boost the moral between the students and team members by continuing to motivate and uplift each other. We randomly surprise teachers and employees with gifts and prizes. We have created events like Coffee with B12, State Fair of Skyline (we created a State Fair scene in our student center and gave faculty and other team members free state fair type foods, prizes and more events.
T’Shaunda Davis, SPED/Vision
The principal at Bishop Arts STEAM Academy, Ruth Roman-Meza, is always so kind. Every time I enter her campus, she greets me with a smile, asks how I am doing and thanks me for working with her students. Once, when I came to the campus, she told me she was so glad I was there. She always makes me feel welcome, and I thank her so much for her kindness especially since I am new to the district.
Kamron Barton, Edward Titche Elementary School
I pay compliments daily. My mother, a retired DISD counselor, sent all Titche counselors a box of chocolates for National School Counseling Week.
Tip: During next week’s guidance lessons my students will write kind notes to people of their choosing.
Tamara Handy School Leadership Region III-IV
It all starts with a smile and hello, serving a warm welcome rather it’s over the phone or in person can make all the difference for someone who may not be having a good day.
Each day, the team I work with is always willing to step in and offer support; it’s like a real work family. No job is too big or small. We stand ready daily as a team to make a difference in the lives of students, parents, leaders, departments and stakeholders.
Tip: Wall of Kindness/Greatness. Post simple acts of kindness, words of encouragement/inspiration, helping people understand that they have a light and it’s important to keep it bright for themselves and others. Random acts of appreciation and celebrations with music, cards, colors, chants or a dance. Pass the wave with a random act of kindness and pay it forward and continue on to make it contagious.
Mohammad Zamad, school bus driver
Three years back, one of the drivers got in an accident and was admitted to the hospital. We needed to fundraise for her family during medical leave. Later, we found out that she was a coffee lover, and she didn’t get a chance to have a sip of coffee. With the money I donated we were able to buy coffee for all 280 drivers for a month. So with my supervisor’s permission, I decided to buy all the coffee ingredients. In the hard cold morning, a sip of coffee can wake up a driver and increase performance a lot. Everyone loved this idea. Now a few colleagues also help me with these coffee ingredients.
Susan Floyd, Solar Preparatory School for Girls at James B. Bonham
I bought my colleague flowers and a card to thank her for being an amazing partner and to wish her a Happy National Counselors week!
A student handed me a note this week that said you remind me of the sun!
Tip: Give compliments and smiles out as gifts! You never know who may really need it.
Deborah Shultz, Childfind Evaluations
Abagail “Ms. Abby” Tuazon, special education teacher at Thomas Jefferson High School, was placed with us this year from the “Teacher search goes international” program. She is from the Philippines. (Her husband and two children still live there.) I am the diagnostician at Jefferson, and am recently recovering from chemotherapy from colon cancer. Abby has gone above and beyond as I returned to campus. There have been several days where I walked into the special education office and the smell from one of the teacher assistants hand cream was extremely comforting. I commented to her on how great it was to get my senses back. (Anyone who has gone through chemo knows that you lose your sense of taste/smell and things you once loved are awful.) Last week, I got an email from Abby asking when I would next be on campus. She explained that she had a special gift for me. The next day I walked into the office and there was a surprise tube of hand cream. The reason this gift is so above and beyond is because Abby does not have a car. She has to use several buses to get to work and home each day. The majority of her money goes back to her family to help pay for her husband and two children still living in the Philippines. Abby lives with several other international teachers in order to save money, and the fact that she spent these valuable funds to make me happy was just overwhelmingly special. She had to take a bus and walk to the store to buy the cream. She then spent her much needed money on me. I think that we take for granted how much we have and when someone goes above and beyond to make your life better “just because” that is the most precious gift. Thank you Dallas ISD international program for bringing Abby to Jefferson High School. I plan on giving her a personal letter of how great she made me feel and a charm for her to keep.