We have compiled a list of compassion based educational programs that are currently available along with a brief description and a link to the website. This is a work in progress. If you know of, or have a program you offer, please use our contact form let us know so that we can include the information in our list.
Ben’s Bells has a series of Kindness Programs for students K-12, Kind Kids for students in kindergarten through eighth grade, and Kind Campus for students grades ninth through twelfth grade. Both programs emphasize the importance of kindness in our schools and communities. Schools choosing to participate will receive a kit corresponding to the Kind Kids or Kind Campus program. Each kit includes easy to incorporate ideas and materials. The Ben’s Bells Kindness programs are provide at no cost to schools.
Caring School Community
The Caring School Community program, designed for students kindergarten through sixth grade, aims to build classroom and school wide communities while developing students’ social and emotional skills. The Caring School Community program focuses on strengthening students’ connectedness to school in order to increase academic motivation and achievement while reducing violence and delinquency. Caring School Community curriculum can be purchased by grade level for $250.00 per classroom package. Additional resources can be purchased at a supplemental expense.
Center for Spiritual and Ethical Education
The Center for Spiritual and Ethical Education offers a number of resources for educators, on a wealth of topics including including a character education program. CSEE boasts a 3- Year School Culture Partnership that aims to “decrease academic Integrity infractions, improve academic motivation, reduce bullying, diminish disciplinary incidents, develop students who are stubbornly ethical and establish a stronger attachment to your school.” The partnership includes three days of on-site professional development for faculty and staff, two days of on site consultation, three years of assessment and progress monitoring, recognition as a “School of Ethical Excellence,” guaranteed evidence- based information and strategies. Additional benefits are also available. The Center for Spiritual and Ethical Education 3- Year School Culture Partnership has a cost of $17,500.00. Payment plans and scholarships are available.
Character First Education
Character First Education is a division of Strata Leadership, designed to reach a wide audience, including both public and private schools, mentoring programs, families, summer camps and other educational settings. Character First has developed curriculum for students of all ages. For elementary schools, Character First offers four units of instruction, one for each Attentiveness, Enthusiasm, Patience and Responsibility. Curriculum for all four units can be purchased for $9.99, or you may choose to order a separate “Teacher Pack” for each unit at $24.99 each. Each teacher pack includes an eight page manual that provides up to three hours of instruction, an anchor chart, 25 character cards to be distributed to students and access to supplemental resources such as PDF’s and videos through the Character First Learning Center. For secondary schools, Character First offers a bully prevention curriculum, Engage, that focuses on identifying, preventing and responding to bullying. The Engage curriculum includes as school wide license, a digital download and one physical curriculum notebook. The curriculum can be purchased for $1200.00.
Children’s Charter for Compassion
The Children’s Charter for Compassion was created to help children understand how to treat themselves and others with love, kindness and compassion. To do so, the Children’s Charter for Compassion has created a series of downloadable activity books. The activity books are an fun and easy way for children to learn about compassionate behavior. The charter also encourages schools to become “Compassionate Schools.”
Coexist is a group that centers on forgiveness, gratitude, compassion, and service to others using the healing process used by the Rwandans as a model. The goal of this group is to show the world that gratitude can cultivate emotional aspects other than amenities, and that forgiveness needs to be on a larger scale. This group has put together an educational curriculum on how to teach these progressive concepts through the stories of actual Rwandan genocide survivors.
Committee for Children
The Committee for Children strives to produce social-emotional learning materials to help children to succeed in school and in life. The Committee for Children currently has two programs available to educators. The first, called Second Step, is designed for children in prekindergarten to grade eight. The curriculum covers a number of social-emotional learning skills such as empathy, emotion management, problem solving, self regulation, executive function skills, and skills for learning. The program now also includes a bullying prevention unit. Second Step curriculum can be purchased by grade level for around $359. The Committee for Children has also released a complete bullying prevention curriculum, Steps to Respect. Steps to Respect teaches children how to make friends, recognize their feelings and how to recognize, refuse and report bullying. The complete Steps to Success program can be purchased for $859.00.
Educators for Social Responsibility
Educators for Social Responsibility (ESR) provides a number of resources for educators including, but not limited to the Resolving Conflict Creatively program. The Resolving Conflict Creatively program aims to foster the creation of caring, peaceable school communities for students in prekindergarten through eighth grade. The program offers sixteen lessons for each grade level that emphasize building relationships, understanding feelings, developing empathy, managing emotions and developing social responsibility. The program curriculum also addresses stereotyping and ways to reduce racial/ethnic/gender put-downs in the classroom. In addition to the lessons, the Resolving Conflict Creatively program includes a peer mediation and family component. Resolving Conflict Creatively training is required and typically lasts 24-30 hours. Resolving Conflict Creatively curriculum can be purchased for approximately $41.00.
It’s Good 2B Good
It’s Good 2B Good a character education curriculum that encourages students ages 8-12 to become good people. The curriculum includes twelve lessons that can be used in conjunction with the Common Core State Standards. The It’s Good 2B Good curriculum also meets the requirements of an intervention program, and is proven beneficial for students demonstrating at-risk behaviors.
Generation On pushes and ignites youth to make a difference in the world through service to others. The goal is to push children to change the world themselves through service. The mission statement of Generation On is “To inspire, equip, and mobilize youth to take action that changes the world and themselves through service. “
Greater Good provides educators with a wealth of resources centered around the themes of gratitude, altruism, compassion, empathy, forgiveness, happiness and mindfulness. Greater Good aims to develop students’ social emotional intelligence in hopes of increasing their overall academic achievement. Greater Good offers a six day summer institute to equip educators with the social-emotional learning tools that will benefit both students and teachers.
I Can Problem Solve
The I Can Problem Solve curriculum teaches students how to produce alternative solutions to problems, anticipate consequences and be effective problem solvers. The curriculum is designed for student in prekindergarten and elementary school, with 59 lessons for prekindergarten, 83 lessons for kindergarten and primary grades, and 77 lessons for intermediate elementary grades. The program also includes parent pages and strategies for integration into core academic subject areas. Initial training for the I Can Problem Solve program is required. There is a $44.95 fee for the program.
The Incredible Years Dinosaur Curriculum focuses on helping students ages three to eight to develop skills to understand and recognize feelings, solve problems, manage anger and build and maintain friendships. Curriculum is presented in a series of approximately 60 lessons including videos puppetry and discussions. Each lesson includes a homework assignment and many include notices home to parents. Incredible Years training is available for teachers and also for parents. Training is not required. Dinosaur Curriculum starts at $1350.00; other resources are available at and additional cost.
The MindUp program is set up with lessons for students in each of three levels, Pre-Kindergarten through second grade, third through fifth grade, and sixth through eighth grade. MindUp teaches students the core practices of deep breathing and attentive listening with the intent to enhance the students’ self awareness, focus attention, promote self-regulation, and reduce stress. MindUp also includes fifteen lessons at each level that include a “getting ready” activity, a warm up, and detailed instructions for the teacher for student engagements. Mind up works to promote generalization and support connection to academic instruction. MindUp training is available, but not required. Each level of curriculum is offered at a cost of $19.99.
Open Circle curriculum, designed for students in kindergarten through fifth grade, is meant to equip teachers with resources to create a cooperative classroom community while establishing positive relationships and effective approaches to problem solving. The Open Circle program comes complete with with 34 structured lessons, aligned to the Common Core State Standards, that cover relationship building and communication skills, understanding and managing emotions, and problem solving. Open Circle also has a separate unit on bullying and separate components to support school wide implementation and family involvement. Open Circle training is required and is typically spread across the academic year. Open Circle curriculum is available for purchase at $75.00 per grade level.
Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies
The Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies (PATHS) program is designed for students in prekindergarten to sixth grade, teaches children conflict resolution skills, emotion regulation, empathy and responsible decision-making. The program comes complete with scripted lessons, implementation guidelines, supplementary activities that connect to academics, suggestions for engaging parents, and family handouts.PATHS training is available, but not required. The PATH curriculum is available for purchase. Prices vary by grade level.
The Positive Action program is designed for students from prekindergarten to grade twelve. The program, which emphasizes effective self-management, social skills, character and mental health. The Positive Action curriculum is centered around the philosophy that “You feel good about yourself when you do positive actions, and there is a positive way to do everything.” The program is divided by grade level, with each containing approximately 140 scripted lessons. Separate units on on bullying prevention, drug education, conflict resolution and promoting a positive school climate are also available.Positive Action training is available, but not required. Complete Positive Action curriculum kits are available for purchase by grade level for approximately $450.00. Supplemental materials are also available.
The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation (RAK)
The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation (RAK) is an internationally recognized nonprofit inspiring a culture of kindness schools, homes, and communities. We believe kindness is more than a nice idea; it’s critical to the success of all schools and the creation of just and caring societies. RAK offers online Kindness in the Classroom resources (bilingual, K-12, Common Core-aligned lesson plans and activities) as well as inspiring videos, quotes, group activities, and a robust social media community. All for free. Our research shows that teaching kindness not only boosts social, emotional and academic learning, it also nurtures a trusting school climate, improves teacher retention and facilitates classroom management.
Responsive Classroom is a research based approach to elementary education that results in greater teacher effectiveness, high student achievements and improved school climate. The Responsive Classroom approach is designed to create classrooms that are responsive to students physical, emotional, social, and intellectual needs. This is accomplished through ten essential teaching practices and strategies such as, morning meeting, rule creation, interactive modeling, positive language, logical consequences, guided academic discover, academic choice, classroom organization, and collaborative problem-solving and guidelines for working with families. Responsive Classroom training is required, and is conducted in two parts, each lasting four and one half days. Responsive Classroom resources are available for purchase individually, at approximately $20.00 each, or in packages.
Roots of Action
Roots of Action strives to help youth develop an internal compass. Our mission is to help parents, schools, and communities grow supportive families, innovative workers, engaged citizens, and ethical leaders in the new Digital Age. Offering a blend of stories and insights drawn from multidisciplinary research, our goal is to help young people develop an internal compass with eight core abilities: Resilience, Learning, Social Skills, Caring, Self-Awareness, Creativity, Strategy, and Character.
The RULER approach was designed by the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. The program is designed for use in kindergarten through eighth grade to promote emotional literacy, including Recognizing, Understanding, Labeling, Expressing, and Regulating emotions. The RULER approach aims to make emotions a central part of learning and teaching. The RULER approach is based on 16 anchor lessons, and 75 additional lessons, that can be integrated into standard curriculum. RULER training typically lasts at least two days and is required. RULER training is available at Yale University, or at your school. See the RULER website to request a quote.
Seeds of Compassion
Seeds of Compassion provides educators with a number of lessons that aim to spark conversations about what compassion is and its importance in a healthy society. Detailed information by grade level can be found of the Seeds of Compassion website. Lessons are available for download online at no cost.
Too Good for Violence
Too Good for Violence is a violence prevention and character education program designed for students in kindergarten through eighth grade. The program focuses on character-based skills such as respect, celebrating diversity, and understanding feelings and actions. Too Good for Violence curriculum comes complete with seven scripted lessons, infusion activities that integrate social and emotional skills with academic content, recommended readings, videos and home activities. Too Good for Violence training is available, but not required. Too Good for Violence curriculum is available for purchase by grade level for approximately $125.00.
Wake Up Schools
Wake Up Schools is an initiative to cultivate mindfulness in education by means of retreats for educators and students. Mindfulness is proven effective in reducing stress, anxiety and depression in addition to increasing emotional resilience, happiness, positive social behavior and cognitive skills. Information of retreat locations and options is available on the Wake Up Schools website.