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4 Elements of a Kindness Practice

The big-hearted basics to get started.

Our tools and resources are  designed to help you launch a kindness practice with your family.

Not all at once. Not in an overwhelming way. Rather, meaningful acts of kindness can and will become an essential part of your family’s routine one habit at a time.

A family kindness practice is not simply an occasional volunteer engagement. It’s a way of moving through your busy days with intention, empathy, and wonder.
— Sarah Aadland, Big-Hearted Families™ Program Director

The four strategies below will help launch your kindness practice in increments, one simple act, book, or conversation each day.

1. Nurture Everyday Habits:

Start where you are. Take a look at your family’s schedule and find a way to build one small acts of kindness into something you already enjoy doing.

We offer four downloadable worksheets to help you think through your families interests and build compassion into what you already do.

Some examples our members have enjoyed include:

2. Reflect Together:

No matter how small or great your act of kindness, the conversations you have about them matter.  Reflections help you make the most of your family activity, by extending meaningful family time and by teaching children to think critically about their actions.

Reflecting on your kind acts, books, and experiences teaches kids how to ask big questions, how to make earnest observations, and how to walk in the shoes of another.

We offer discussion questions with each of our projects to make it easier for you to get started.

For more tools, check out our collection of Conversation Starters.

3. Read Together:

The stories you share offer a great opportunity for big conversations. Through literature, you can explore a range of social issues, emotional states, and personal challenges from your own home and in your own time!

Check out our conversation starters to use with any book. And to find a big-hearted book for your child or tween on diverse subjects such as bullying, citizenship, mindfulness, and creativity, check out our lists of Picture Book and Chapter Book recommendations.

Big-hearted reading will help you strengthen your empathy “muscles” without leaving home.

4. Volunteer Together

We come to these last only because volunteer experiences are less frequent.

No matter how often you schedule volunteer events, they will make a huge impact on your children. Some of our member favorites include:

Be sure to sign up for our volunteer listings and receive timely, local volunteer ideas each month!

Keep your family kindness practice on track – with help from DGT™!

When you join our Membership Circle, you'll receive a wonderful array of benefits while you support our nonprofit.