BKind day at Brentwood Elementary

Dozens of heads lowered and eyes squeezed shut in a show of unity, a visual example of the school-wide commitment to kindness.

  • Feb. 27, 2015 2:00 p.m.

Brentwood Elementary principal Shelly Hardcastle

As Brentwood Elementary’s BKind assembly came to an end late Thursday morning, principal Shelly Hardcastle asked the gathered students to close their eyes and imagine what they could do to spread a little kindness among their classmates.

Dozens of heads lowered and eyes squeezed shut in a show of unity, the sea of matching T-shirts a visual example of the school-wide commitment to kindness.

Thanks to the Parents’ Advisory Committee, every student in the school received a BKind t-shirt that morning, to bring them together and help remind them of the importance of treating each other with respect.

BKind day grew from the school’s Be A Good Friend day, and coincided with Pink Shirt Day, a national stand against bullying started by two Nova Scotia students in 2007 that eventually sparked the United Nations to adopt an international anti-bullying day.

Brentwood’s take on the event is a little different, but no less powerful.

Rather than focusing on how to stamp out bullying, the school put the emphasis on how to encourage positive behaviour.

“It’s about putting a positive spin on it,” said Hardcastle.

“Bullying can be a really misused word in many social learning contexts,” she added. “A five-year-old having a conflict over a toy might say they’re being bullied, but that’s just learning how to get along.”

Instead of the ‘anti’ attitude, Hardcastle and the other teachers talk about fostering a kind approach.

“A lot of it is about being kind. Taking care of ourselves and taking care of each other and our community,” she said. “It’s about helping, rather than hurting, and kids get that.”

Hardcastle was inspired to develop BKind day after talking to a friend and fellow principal in Surrey, and soon had a batch of the black and pink T-shirts made up for the teachers to purchase, but the movement quickly went much further.

“PAC saw them, and they said ‘we think all the kids should have them,’” said Hardcastle.

“What better idea to not only support Be A Good Friend day, but to also send each child home with something,” said Lindsay Tusche, a member of the Parents’ Advisory Committee.

“The kids will wear them again,” she added, and noted that it’s a great way to help remind them of the importance of being kind in their day to day lives.

Tusche, who has a daughter in Grade 5 and a son in Grade 2 at the school, said the kids were excited for the project from the beginning.

“We were going around, trying on different sizes with the kids, and they were asking what colours the shirts were going to be,” she said. “The kids were just buzzing when we told them what was going on.”

An appropriate choice of words, as the shirts feature a bright pink bee.

Anson D’Anjou, a Grade 5 student who spoke at the assembly about his own experiences with practicing kindness, said the school has done a good job with the BKind day.

“They really try and make other people understand kindness,” he said. “It’s good for the other kids to learn about kindness.”

D’Anjou has his own goal when it comes to spreading kindness and goodwill.

“Every day I try and make people laugh,” he said.

Just Posted

Transplant caregiver starts website for financial, mental health support

Beth Campbell-Duke started Transplant Rouges after her husband’s double lung transplant

Saanich swimmer has ribs removed, posts them on social media

Jill Yoneda makes light of rare surgery for ‘slipping rib syndrome’

Victoria ranked as one of B.C.’s worst cities to work in

High living costs and low average incomes drop Victoria from the top 10

Panthers set to close out home schedule before Christmas break

Following a 5-2 loss to Nanaimo, the club will take on Kerry Park Islanders this week

Cyclist without helmet thrown onto windshield in Victoria

Despite damage to bike, cyclist uninjured following accident

Lawyer for Chinese exec detained by Canada says it’s ‘inconceivable’ she would flee

Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of the U.S. during a layover at the Vancouver airport

Federal government plans examination of coerced sterilization

The Liberals have been pressed for a rapid response to recent reports on the sterilizations

Huitema, Cornelius named 2018 Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

Huitema was captain of Canada’s fourth-place team at this year’s FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup

Canada not slowing emissions from oil and gas: environmental groups

New report released at the United Nations climate talks in Poland

Liberal Party moves Trudeau fundraiser from military base

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400

Pipeline protesters arrested at B.C. university

Three protesters were arrested after TRU property allegedly vandalized with red paint

Goodale to ‘examine’ transfer of Rafferty to medium-security prison

Michael Rafferty was sentenced to life in prison in 2012 in the kidnapping, sexual assault and first-degree murder of Tori Stafford

‘Abhorrent’ condition of autistic B.C. boy shows flaws in care system: report

‘Charlie’ was underweight and ‘covered in feces’ when he was removed from his mom’s care

Minister appoints former CIRB chair to resolve Canada Post labour dispute

Postal workers engaged in weeks of rotating walkouts

Most Read