There's a new newspaper being offered to classrooms in our area to teach kids about the value of showing kindness and respect to animals, the environment and one another. It's called KindNews and the goal is all about building good character in kids.
KindNews stands for Kids In Nature's Defense, but that’s no the only message the newspaper is getting across.
Pat Hurt is the Co-Chairperson for KindNews. She says, "It teaches children kindness towards animals, kindness towards the environment and kindness toward each other."
KindNews is published by the National Association of Humane and Environmental Education (NAHEE) and the National Humane Society. The program hasn't yet made it into local schools, but there's already excitement about it.
"It'll be a big hit with the kids. Anything that will get them involved with reading and they can participate in and then they can go and tell their parents about. It will be a big hit with them," says Patti Chandler.
Patti Chandler got involved as a sponsor for KindNews and her company, Jimmy Diemer's Supermarket, along with Heavenly Hams is vowing to match the first 20 Adopt-A-Classrooms. The cost to sponsor a class for KindNews is $30. That covers the newspapers, the teaching kit and an online key for teachers.
Hurt says, "And we need it now because of the decreasing school funding, increasing animal cruelty, the increase of youth violence and the connection between domestic abuse and animal abuse. Kindness must be taught again."
As a parent, Chandler feels it is a great way to teach her kids.
Chandler says, "My children have looked it. I have a seven-year-old and a 10-year-old, and I try to instill in them certain values and this helps. This is on their level."
KindNews is also getting attention from area schools.
Hurt says, "Any principal teacher or parent seeing this knows the quality knows why its award winning and they want to get it for their child's class."
The deadline for collecting money for the Adopt-A-Classroom is May 30. KindNews will begin distribution in classrooms in September 2004. The subscriptions are good for the 2004-2005 school year.