EASTHAMPTON, MA – Students at White Brook Middle School aim to show just how strong the power of kindness is as they attempt to spread good deeds around their school, the city and the world.
The Pay it Forward Challenge, which was launched after assemblies on Tuesday, hopes to create a worldwide chain of random acts of kindness starting at the Easthampton middle school. Students, faculty and staff have been asked by after-school social advocacy group Free the Children to each touch three different people with kindness during thios week.
“We’re really challenging our school to do this,” said White Brook English language arts and social studies teacher and Free the Children adviser Judith Breier. “and then we’re even going to do the world.”
The group’s members delivered a presentation on the project at two school-wide assemblies Tuesday morning. There, they defined a random act of kindness as “a selfless act performed by a person or people who wish either to assist or to cheer up a person or people.”
While the idea of a spark of kindness spreading from the Pioneer Valley around the world may seem like a lofty goal, two students did the math to prove it’s more attainable than some might think.
Eighth graders Hanna Wauczinski and Alyssa Varney were asked by their advanced algebra teacher Tracy Poulin to crunch the kindness numbers.
They determined that if all 560 White Brook students and faculty spread kindness to three different people on Tuesday, 1,580 people would be touched by kindness. If that pattern continues, 7,280 people would be affected after two days — nearly half the population of Easthampton.
In four days, the kindness would reach 67,760 people and after two weeks every person on Earth would be impacted.