As part of the district’s focus on character education, students at Hiawatha Elementary School learned the impact of cultivating kindness during an assembly program presented by the ReesSpecht Life Foundation.
With the help of student volunteers, guest speaker Richard Specht began the program by demonstrating the powerful chain reaction both negative and positive actions can create in the world. He visually illustrated the spread of negativity by pouring a dark liquid into a light one, changing that liquid’s color to dark as well. Specht then showcased the power of kindness as he poured a light liquid on top of the dark liquid, triggering a chemical reaction and turning it light once again.
Throughout the remainder of the program, Specht reminded the students that they can have a positive impact on the world by looking for ways to cultivate and pay kindness forward. Noting how his foundation is working to pay the acts of kindness his family received in the wake of tragedy forward, he told the audience of the “cultivate kindness, pay it forward” cards the foundation distributes following acts of kindness. With an initial goal of 500 acts, Specht far surpassed that number, growing the initiative to 430,000 acts of kindness worldwide to date.
At the end of the program, the students were challenged to be positive forces for change within their school and were each given their own “cultivate kindness” card to share and use within the community.