Children can be taught kindness

Yes, we referred to teaching kindness, not instilling or motivating. This is what scientists say as well. All it takes is using the right words. The aim is to make the child see himself as a ‘helper’ rather than requesting him to help out.

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, the University of Washington, and Stanford University concluded in a studyIt consisted of two experiments on around 150 kids between 3 and 6 years of age from various ethnic and economic backgrounds living in Northern California.

The experiment started with an adult volunteer telling the kids about helpers and helping. Then, the same volunteers gave them a chance to help out. The catch is that the kids have an attractive toy to play with when this chance came up. In a follow up experiment, different volunteers spoke to the kids before and during the experiment. In both the cases, children who were addressed as “helpers” helped more often than those who were asked “to help”. The tasks were simple acts of kindness without any prompting. 

“These findings suggest that parents and teachers can encourage young children to be more helpful by using nouns like helper instead of verbs like helping when making a request of a child,” said Christopher J. Bryan, assistant professor of psychology at the University of California, San Diego, who worked on the study. “Using the noun helper may send a signal that helping implies something positive about one’s identity, which may in turn motivate children to help more,” he added.

We bet this works on adults as well. After all, adults are just grown-up children. Let’s see if it does. Now who wants to be a helper? Come over to Crowdera where you can prove if you are a helper. Or you can refer it to someone who is need of helpers to start their FREE fundraising campaign.