Kindness may be key to happiness for kids
Nice kids are happier, more popular than bullies.
New research indicates that kids who adhere to the old adage, "Do unto others as you would like others to do unto you,” are happier and more popular reports Fox News.
This finding suggests that simple and brief acts of kindness might help reduce bullying, researchers say.
Not only do happy people often do good for others, but being more prosocial increases people's sense of well-being.
Based on this research, scientists carried out what they say was the first long-term experiment examining kindness in more than 400 “tweens” – kids age 9 to 12 – attending Vancouver, Canada, elementary schools.
Half the randomly-selected students were asked by teachers to keep track of pleasant places they visited, such as playgrounds, sporting fields, shopping centers or a friend's house. The other half were asked to perform acts of kindness. "We gave them examples of acts of kindness, but we left it up to the kids to decide what was a kind act," researcher Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, a developmental psychologist at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, was quoted.
More on MSN Living: 50 worst celebrity hairstyles of all time
After four weeks, both groups said they were happier, but the kids who had performed acts of kindness reported experiencing greater acceptance from their peers.
Recently, news journalist Ann Curry proposed #26acts of kindness in response to the Newtown shooting. The movement went viral as the hashtag “#26acts” trended on Twitter and a "26 Acts of Kindness" Facebook page has exceeded 17,000 likes. From baking treats for a teacher to leaving a bigger tip, this simple idea has sparked good deeds across the nation and even kids are getting in on the do-good act.
More on MSN Living: Worst celeb fashions of the year
According to Schonert-Reichl, bullying often increases in grades 4 and 5. By asking students to briefly and regularly act kindly to those around them, "hopefully we can get kids to get along in the classroom and reduce instances of the bullying and teasing that we see, especially around this age group," Schonert-Reichl was quoted.
Share this post if you encourage your kids to be kind. If your family has participated in the #26acts movements, we’d love to hear about it in the comments below.
Photo: Peter Cade/Getty Images
More from MSN Living:
family: tips, trends & advice for all things family
Kids and water parks go together like macaroni and cheese. Check out our top picks for your next wet and wild vacation.
We got new dads to dish on what they wish their partners knew. So, listen up, mamas!
Are you really ready to be a parent, or should you stick with a houseplant? Find out before you TTC.
With all the glitz and glamour that comes out of Tinseltown (not to mention the endless tabloid fodder), it's not always obvious that many celebrities are animal lovers, too.
From designer crosses to giant breeds, we scoured Vetstreet's data of millions of dog breeds to determine the trendiest breeds of the past decade.
One of the most unsettling consequences of bringing a child into your previously simple, happily oblivious manly life is that you’re now unquestionably, inescapably…The Man.
Whether it was baby’s first kick or the first time your boobs leaked in public, there’s a point in every mom’s life when the world as you know it ends and you realize -- Whoa, I'm someone's mom now. Some of our favorite mommy bloggers revealed what their aha moments were. They range from heartwarming to completely hilarious.
From DIY jewelry to homemade “flowers” to sweet vases, you can help your kid make mom’s day with these crafty gifts.
The first parenting shock: They let you take the baby home. Like, without supervision. Only then do the real surprises unfold. Here's what readers told us was most unexpected for them as they embraced this whole mama thing.
Be prepared to say, 'awww,' multiple times while flipping through this collection super-sweet stuff for babies and kids on Etsy.com. Take a peek at some of our favorite finds for moms (and click 'More' to find out how to get this amazing gnome hat!)...By MSN Living editors
Your Mother’s Day plans are all set, right? Brunch is booked and a fabulous gift is wrapped and ready to go. So take a breather and celebrate these stylish celebrity moms who work hard, care for their kids, and manage to look amazing in the process.
Find out this year’s top baby names on Parenting.com, and see what we predict will be big in 2013