25 Random Acts of Kindness Kids Can Do

Painted rocks with sweet, kind notes like "Laugh often" and "Dream big."A random act of kindness is something kind you do for someone else, usually a stranger, with no expectation of it being returned. It’s so important to teach kids how to be kind to themselves, to friends, and to people in general because that helps us humanize and care for each other.

The best part about random acts of kindness is that you get to set all the parameters. Want to do something big, small, short, or long? You can do any of that with random acts of kindness for kids.

>> RELATED READ :: How to Volunteer with Kids in Collin County <<

{Mostly} Free Random Acts of Kindness for Kids

1. Ask someone new to play: Encourage your kids to play with someone they usually do not play with at school or on the playground. Flip the script and do the same! Ask a parent you haven’t really connected with to a playground or coffee shop meetup.

2. Swap chores: Make a game out of finishing chores for another family member. It’s a fun surprise!

3. Leave inspirational notes behind: Grab a sticky note pad and write inspirational messages. Take the notes with you when you’re out and about and stick them where someone will see and be encouraged.

4. Collect donations: Pick a room or closet to go through and collect donations. Remember: If you don’t have the time or resources to fix something up, it’s likely the place you donate it to will not either. It’s kind to donate things that are in good condition.

5. Reduce, reuse, recycle: Try to recycle everything all day long! Challenge your family to recycle more than you trash in a week.

6. Pick up trash: Go on a walk and make a plan to pick up trash while you go. Bring gloves and a bag.

7. Give a ton of compliments: Try to compliment everyone you talk to during the day!

Requires Some Supplies and Creativity

8. Make and mail three surprise letters: Everyone loves getting happy snail mail! Write a letter encouraging or giving thanks to someone today.

9. Leave quarters in gumball machines: If your kids are like ours, every time they see a gumball machine, they want to use it! But rarely do I have quarters. Gather some quarters and leave them in and on top of the machine.

10. Video chat with a friend unexpectedly: Text a friend and ask if he or she is available to video chat. Just to say hello and catch up!

11. Draw or color a picture: Encourage your kids to give away artwork they make at school to others. This is one of my personal favorites. I love coloring in, or water coloring over, little inspiring message cards and leaving them for someone to find.

12. Read a book to someone: Video chat with a family member and read to them. You can also read to a younger sibling or friend. A lot of animal shelters have reading programs in place where kids can come read to the pets.

13. Leave reviews: I do not believe that people understand how important reviews are to small businesses. You can review products, books, restaurants, and so much more. The possibilities are endless. It makes such a difference, and kids can easily help with this.

14. Chalk the walk: Go on a walk and draw on the sidewalk (where it is public!). You can leave encouraging messages for people or pretty pictures. This is a super fun and easy way to make others smile.

A kid writes with chalk on a sidewalk.

Join a Larger Movement

15. Do you crochet?: Check out the Random Acts of Crochet Kindness on Facebook. Make happy little crochet pieces and leave them for others to find.

16. Rocks rock!: In our neighborhood group during the pandemic, someone left a challenge for people to paint fun or encouraging things on rocks and place them along the path to the local park. You can have fun painting rocks and putting them out in places that will make people smile.

17. For the love of lasagna: An organization called Lasagna Love knows there are a lot of people struggling and a lot of people who love to share their cooking. Check and see if there is a group in your area. You can nominate a family or request a lasagna as well.

18. Pleasing puzzles and books: Puzzle Pandas started a world-wide puzzle scavenger hunt that is easy to join. After you complete a puzzle and are ready to gift it away to someone else, you tag it and post about it! The Book Fairies do the same thing with books! Hide books worldwide for other people to find and enjoy.

19. Join a service group: The great thing about the DFW area is there are tons of service groups to join. I recommend checking Facebook groups first as leads. And always, always take someone with you when you go to volunteer somewhere new. Do your best to make sure it is safe.

20. Little Free Pantry and Library: Little Free Pantry and Little Free Library often have shelf combos out in public spaces where people can take and leave items. There are a whole bunch in Collin County! Grab what you need and share what you can. Sharing snacks and books makes anyone happy!

>> RELATED READ :: 5 Ways to Get Involved in Your Community <<

Food-Related Random Acts of Kindness

21. Make no-bake treats together: Baking sweet treats without having to use an oven is perfect for younger kids or older, busier kids. Who do you know that could use a plate of chocolate-covered strawberries or chocolate chip oatmeal bites?

22. Volunteer and stay for a meal at a nursing home: Every nursing home is different, and you will have to check out the volunteer guidelines. But oftentimes it brings big, big smiles to have kiddos volunteer to visit elderly people with you.

23. Gather up a little allowance money: Collect a few dollars and purchase a small gift card at a retail or food store. Give the gift card back to the cashier to give to someone later in the day. Or pay for the drinks of the people behind you!

24. Bring a family dinner: Think of a family who might be having a hard season or has younger kids. Offer to bring over a specific dinner on a specific date. If that doesn’t work out, offer a gift card.

25. Bake a sweet treat for someone together: Think of someone who could use a pick-me-up. This is perfect for kids who are a little older and can bake on their own with minimal adult help. Learning how to get the ingredients, finding a recipe, baking it, and gifting most of it to others — that’s a great little package of life lessons.

Build random acts of kindness with kids into your normal weekly or monthly routine. What kind things do you enjoy doing for other people with your children?

Sarah Spencer
Sarah was raised in Plano, took a detour in Oklahoma for college, and now lives in McKinney. She's a teacher and mom who believes that 10 three year olds are easier to handle than one. Sarah and her husband, Nathaniel, are foster and adoptive parents and advocates. Big fans of deep conversations, they run a blog that helps parents connect with their kids over entertainment. She likes to try DIY projects that are way over her head and experiment with different teas and chocolates while binge-watching great series. Follow Sarah at Down the Hobbit Hole Blog and follow on Facebook or Instagram for her movie and book guides for parents.