At a small school in Birchwood, Wisconsin, a kindergarten teacher has marveled at the results after adding the role of “classroom greeter” to the kids’ jobs at school.
Nicole Schlapper told “Good Morning America” that she hopes the daily “small, simple gesture of friendship and kindness” her students show one another each morning “will stay with them as they grow up together throughout their years, in school and into adulthood.”
“The children absolutely love this job and show great excitement when their turn comes up,” Schlapper said.
One particular day is getting a lot of attention. The video of 5-year-old Colin Baker doing the classroom “greeter” job has received more than 1 million views on the school district’s Facebook page.
The children are able to choose how they want to be greeted. On Colin’s day, the majority of the 15 kindergarten students chose hugs.
“I think most the kids choose hug just because Colin is such a good hugger,” his mom Chrisstie Baker told “GMA.” “He puts his heart into every one. I’m very proud of him.”
Schlapper said the morning routine has “been a wonderful way for the children to connect with each other, build relationships and show kindness. I truly believe it promotes a sense of community and sets a positive tone for the day.”
Sara Waldron, the school’s business and information technology teacher, told “GMA” that Birchwood is a “great school and [we] are lucky to have students who care so much about each other.”
She added that there are a high number of students in the school living in poverty.
“As a school, we worry about funding, but what we lack in resources, we make up in love and compassion. With so many tragedies in our neighboring communities in the last month, it is so amazing to receive such positive feedback from so many people all over the world,” said Waldon, referring to the video.
Baker hopes adults take away something positive from the now-viral video: “I hope that adults can learn from him and his friends that it’s OK to get out of their comfort zone and make someone else’s day. And to put our all into even the smallest things, like a hug.”
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