The Laws of Life essay contest, sponsored by Character.org, encourages middle school and high school students to reflect and write about a core value that means the most to them – and why. We are committed to promoting youth voices, thus below we offer 2 youth essays recognized in the Laws of Life essay contest that focus on the importance of kindness. Note: Character.org is accepting student essays which they can submit for the 2024 contest over the summer. To learn more, click here
Kindness (Makes Me Happy)
By Addison, Grade 6 – Lasalle Springs Middle School – MO
What would our world be without kindness? What if nobody ever held the door open for you? What if the cashiers never said, “Have a nice day?” We often take these small acts of kindness for granted, but we don’t realize how sad our world would be without them. It seems normal for these small acts of kindness to be done by some people, but what if we all did some? We should all commit to doing random acts of kindness every day, because even the smallest things can lift someone else's spirits. One act of kindness that is simple and genuine is compliments.
Everyone thinks of compliments in their head every day. Just imagine if every time you thought of a compliment you said it out loud to the person you were thinking about. Not only does kindness make others happy, but it can make you happier too. Think about the last time you did something nice for someone. It probably made them feel really good, and their gratitude probably made you feel good too. If everyone committed to being kind, our world would be so much happier.
I really only started paying attention to kindness about a year ago, but it has become a really important characteristic to me. I started noticing all the opportunities everyone has every day to be kind. After that, I realized how happy it made me feel to say thank you to bus drivers and teachers, compliment others, and just being nicer overall. It makes me happy to make others happy. I love seeing people smile when I say or do something nice for them. It has been so eye opening to understand how important kindness is, and I believe that everyone has the chance to accomplish this feeling too. Kindness isn’t hard, and it’s free. Just think about how if everyone was kind, how happy our world would be.
By Lila, Grade 7 – Pelham Middle School – NY
It’s hard to believe that this society in which we have family, friends, peers, co-workers, and lovers can be so messy and cruel. There are bullies, litterers, abusers, controllers, and so many others. These people are the ones who start fights, make others insecure or scared, and make the world a worse place. Others just stand around and watch it happen, either because they don’t care, they are scared to step in, or they don’t understand what’s happening.
However, there’s quite an easy way to fix these problems that ruin the Earth and the living things on it. It’s called kindness. Kindness, by definition, is “the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate”. This can be shown in many different ways, whether you’re listening to a friend when they need support or helping sick animals in the ocean. No act of kindness is less important than the other, as they change the world for the better, no matter how slow the change is or unimportant it may seem. But not everyone has the means or energy to do this, much less even think of it.
Those are the ones who break society’s standards and the people in it, uncaring and bitter. They may reply to a post on Facebook, calling someone dumb, or they may attempt to hurt someone in ways unthinkable to the average person. Even acts that seem like they mean nothing change something, even by a little bit. In order to see this world thrive, to see it become a better place with people looking at each other with care and beauty and not disgust or horror, society needs to drop their selfish ways. The world needs to know what kindness feels like in order for the world to improve.
|Source: How Do Elementary Students Show Kindness to Others?
With kindness, people wouldn’t get judged for being different, wildlife would get more care, people wouldn’t get abused or teased, standards would lower, the environment would be cleaner, and so much more. This is why kindness is so important to me. With kindness, the whole world would change for the better, as long as everyone has it and has the desire to act upon it. Even one person doing the wrong thing could lead to the victim taking it out on other innocent people, becoming a chain. But if everyone could be kind and see what others and our Earth are going through, they would see the impact of their decisions. The world isn’t like this yet, but it may be one day. With one step at a time, the human population could become better and better, but it will take a while. As long as other people hold the same beliefs as me, my dream may become a reality. Everything counts, no matter how small the action may seem.