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Record-Breaking Kindness Challenge!

This past December, a record breaking, thirty-eight Alberta classes committed to participating in the Kindness Challenge. Students from kindergarten to grade 7 spread acts of kindness towards self, others, animals, and the environment for the first half of December. Each day students completed a different activity by following the Kindness Challenge Calendar. Some of the activities included discovering the importance of native plant species and identifying any in their area, reusing an item rather than throwing it in the trash or recycle, and learning about the Five Freedoms and how to improve the quality of care for pets.

In addition to performing daily acts of kindness, students were also encouraged to ‘make a difference’ by helping a cause or organization throughout the entire Kindness Challenge. Each class decided on what cause to contribute to at the start of the challenge, then collected donations, raised supplies and/or awareness and made their contribution at the conclusion of the challenge. Here are just a few examples of the different ways students made a difference in their communities through the Kindness Challenge:

  • Mrs. Bingley’s grade 4 class from Calgary collected toys for CTV’s Toy Mountain and supplies for the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter
  • Grade one to six students who attend the City of Beaumont’s After School Care collected donations for The Christmas Elves and The Food Bank, and wrote letters to seniors at a local senior’s centre
  • Mrs. Keim’s grade 5 class from Beiseker wrote letters to members of the Canadian Armed Forces and made a ‘giving tree’ that gives back to local families
  • Mrs. Radtke’s and Erin Radloff’s grade 2 class from Edmonton raised over $2000 for Second Chance Animal Rescue Society.

Towards the end of the challenge students reflected on their experience and how their actions contributed to their classroom, school, and community. One teacher overheard her grade 5 students saying “It was FUN…it felt good doing all these kinds of things” and “It would be cool if we did another [Kindness Challenge] throughout the year!”

Did you miss out on participating in the Kindness Challenge in December? If so, the challenge is available online for you and your students to do anytime of the year. Challenge your class to complete the entire challenge, or, see how many days students can complete. Each activity can be easily modified to suit the needs/abilities of your students. Don’t forget to challenge another class and/or group to help make kindness contagious.

Be sure to let us know if you complete the Kindness Challenge. Every class and/or group who participates in the challenge will be awarded a certificate and be added to the Kindness Map!

Record-Breaking Kindness Challenge!

This past December, a record breaking, thirty-eight Alberta classes committed to participating in the Kindness Challenge. Students from kindergarten to grade 7 spread acts of kindness towards self, others, animals, and the environment for the first half of December. Each day students completed a different

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Meet Gloria Ho: The Artist Behind the Posters

For the past six years, the Alberta SPCA has been fortunate to collaborate with local artist, Gloria Ho, in creating our character education classroom poster series. Each year Gloria paints animals that help convey the annual theme. Over the years, thousands of these posters have

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Using Books to Create a Caring Classroom

This school year started like no other. As we transition through these challenging times, it is important for everyone to show a little more compassion and empathy towards others. It is important for us, as teachers, to begin fostering these qualities in students at the

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A Message for Teachers:

Dear Teachers, Thank you for your hard work and dedication to students in this exceptional time. The need for caring for others is becoming ever more salient and we recognize and value the important role of teachers and learning communities in proving support and care

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Students Making a Difference through ‘Class Action’

Service learning projects are a great way to address curricular outcomes while providing students the opportunity to leave a positive and lasting impact on the community. The Alberta SPCA’s ‘Class Action’ projects to help animals, people or the environment provide an opportunity to engage your

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Fostering Curiosity in the Classroom

Children are naturally curious. We know this from the numerous questions they ask each day. However, for some reason it seems as children get older the number of questions asked become fewer. As educators we want to encourage students to continue asking questions and to

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After the War: Animals Helping Veterans

Animals had, and continue to have an important role to play in war. In last year’s Remembrance Day blog we discussed the role animals played in The First World War. This year we are looking at service dogs, and the important role they have in

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Why Curiosity Matters

Curiosity is powerful. It encourages us to ask questions, seek answers, think critically, and find solutions to problems both big and small. It helps us to be open to others, build understanding and foster empathy – and it needs to be nurtured.  Astrophysicist and science

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Summer Reads for Teachers

We usually highlight great animal-themed books for your students, but this list is just for you! The following suggested reads span fiction to non-fiction and are guaranteed to kindle your curiosity about animals and spark reflection about our relationship to them. Saving Manno by Spencer Sekyer

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Animals in the classroom: Responsibilities & Rewards

Mrs. Ainslie-O’Connor is a seasoned grade three teacher who has incorporated classroom animals in her teaching for about 10 years. I met with Mrs. Ainslie-O’Connor in her brightly lit grade three classroom in Spruce Grove and was introduced to some of her furry – and not

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