I’m always about cards, no matter what the occasion. Honestly, most of the time, I don’t even need an occasion. I’m one of those people who just randomly sends you postcards and notes in the mail. If it’s a holiday, even better. In this case, I’m not the biggest proponent of Valentine’s Day (why do we need an excuse to be kind and loving to each other? Shouldn’t we do that every day?), but I am a proponent of teaching kids the meaning of love and kindness.
This is why I love Kindhearted Cards, which were created by Emily Barker. Barker is a creative advertising professional who collaborated with her designer and teacher friends to create cards that illustrate the beauty of tolerance and difference. Barker recently explained why she made them to The Huffington Post:
“I think kindness is key, now more than ever. From ‘build the wall’ chants in the cafeteria to the countless off-camera acts of intolerance, it feels like an especially tough time for kids who may feel different from others. We all know voices of hate can be extremely loud, so I wanted to create a platform that amplifies messages of love and acceptance in time for Valentine’s Day.”
So, how does it work? Parents and teachers can log onto the Kindhearted Cards website to print out the cards for free–and then give them to kids to sign and distribute to their classmates. While they are Valentines-themed, these cards can really be used at any time as a fun note, a way to cheer someone up, or as a way to decorate a locker, office, or bedroom. Honestly, I love them and would totally send them out.
The site also offers resources for parents to guide conversations with their kids about why differences are wonderful, not alienating, and offers free lesson plans that teachers can use in their curriculum as well. Barker also mentions that these cards are kid-approved. She stated:
“A whole school did a pre-Valentine’s Day Week of Kindness and featured the cards. They really resonated with kids and encouraged them to appreciate what makes each of their classmates unique. I’ve also heard from a number of parents who have already printed the cards out for their kids to give out on Valentine’s Day.
I hope that kids have fun passing out these cute cards, and that there’s a lasting impact on continuing to celebrate diversity of all kinds. I hope the cards provide more of an understanding of differences, and help kids walk away with a greater appreciation of what makes each of us unique.”