Lesson 28: Little Acts of Kindness

People generally aren’t used to kindness from strangers.

Most of us are too wrapped up in our lives to pay much attention to anyone
else, or to see how we can be of help to others.

That’s why it’s remarkable when strangers do something unexpected that is kind, generous,
thoughtful, and considerate.

An act of kindness or thoughtfulness can be as simple as holding the door open
for someone else, or letting a person go first in line, or helping someone carry a
heavy bag.

You can begin doing little acts of kindness at home. You can show thoughtfulness by turning
down the volume on the TV set when your sister is studying, making your father a cup of tea,
pressing your mother’s legs when she is tired, doing chores around the house, and running
errands whenever needed.

In your neighbourhood, you can help an elderly neighbour by doing their shopping for them
or taking them to the doctor should the need arise, keeping the area clean, taking care of stray
dogs and cats, putting out bowls of water for birds, and planting trees and shrubs.

Even the smallest actions can have a great impact.

With some people, though, the well of generosity runs deep.

They do incredible things to help other people—and not just people, but also
animals and birds.

They use their time and money to serve the poor, the needy, the sick, and the old.

They volunteer their time at an orphanage, an old people’s home, at a hospital, or at an
animal shelter.

They donate money and materials to help people who are suffering from natural
calamities like floods, cyclones, earthquakes, drought, and fires.

They donate blood and even pledge to donate their vital organs—like their eyes
and kidneys—after death, so other people can benefit.

The actions of these dedicated people can change lives, as well as save lives.

Kindness can be expressed in many ways, by anybody, anywhere, and at any time.

In your home, in your school, in your office, on the road, in the market—let’s give freely of
ourselves and of our time, so we can feel the joy of giving and inspire others to do the same.

A) Vocabulary
Strangers – people not known to you, someone you have never met before
Wrapped up – so busy that you do not notice other people or things around you
Remarkable – surprising, wonderful, special, something out of the ordinary
Thoughtfulness – consideration for the needs of others
Impact – effect, influence, result

B) Discussion Points
1. Discuss three different ways through which you can express kindness:
(a) at home (b) in the bus (c) at school/office.
2. Has anyone shown kindness or generosity to you when you were not expecting it?
Describe the incident.
3. Think of a person who has spent their life helping others. Write a paragraph about this person. The person you choose to write about does not have to be famous.

C) Poem

A Simple Act of Kindness
—by David Harris

A simple act of kindness
can stop a million tears.
A little hug
can give so much joy.
A letter now and then to someone
can save so many wasted years.
We should hold every moment precious
and help as many as we can
with a simple act of kindness
every now and then.
The world would be a better place
if we all cared a little more.
Imagine how many smiling faces
would greet us at the door
if we extended that helping hand
with a simple act of kindness
that could spread across many lands.

1. Do you like the poem?
2. If so, what is your favourite line?
3. Do you like more than one line?
4. Look at the line: ‘A simple act of kindness can stop a million tears.’
5. Can you substitute the word ‘simple’ with another word?
6. Can you substitute ‘million’ with another word?
7. Why do you think the poet uses the word ‘million’?

Revised July 2020

Audio courtesy Tara Kriplani: