The cold and rainy weather didn't stop the festivities at Castle Hills Elementary School in Lewisville, Texas today, as nearly 800 jubilant students and faculty gathered on the blacktop wearing orange and purple shirts, spelling out the word “happy.”
In celebration of the International Day of Happiness, everyone in the building took the #happyacts challenge and posted how they will share happiness on the school’s Happiness Wall—just one of many walls bustling with activity across the country.
“Learning to be happy, grateful and content for what you have are life-long skills that encourages a child not to be selfish,” says Castle Hills principal Donna J. Taylor. “Promoting happiness and focusing on the good in life will benefit the entire school community.”
Students in kindergarten through fifth grade wrote out and posted how they would share happiness, ranging from smiling at one another and helping others to cleaning up the cafeteria and having “millions of playdates with my friends.” For each act of kindness, Live Happy has pledged to donate a dollar to the Big Brothers and Big Sisters program.
Building happiness into the curriculum
All week Castle Hill Elementary School teachers weaved happiness into the curriculum, teaching about the meaning of the IDOH and how important it is to be nice to one another. Big orange buckets were placed throughout the school for students to randomly drop in their happy thoughts about being grateful, kind and nice. Donna says that the effort to keep talking about the value of happiness won’t end after today.
“Our school will continue to encourage and model exceptional leadership and kindness through our Great Expectations program,” she says. “We will also encourage putting others before our self and doing nice things for others without being asked, because that’s the kind of culture we want in our school."