Make the Future
Summit 2022
Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Exchange
at ISTELive 21
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Cultivate Kindness with Technology Integration

Participate and share

Participate and share : Interactive lecture

Monday, June 24, 8:30–9:30 am
Location: 119AB

Tamara Letter  
Empower students to enhance digital citizenship skills as they cultivate kindness in lessons, activities, and service learning projects through a year-long kindness initiative. Learn about Kindness Passion Projects and engage in unique technology-supported experiences during this session. All attendees will receive resources for next-day implementation.

Audience: Coaches, Teachers, Technology coordinators/facilitators
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices useful
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Participant accounts, software and other materials: Twitter, Flipgrid
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Digital citizenship
Grade level: PK-12
Subject area: Language arts
ISTE Standards: For Students:
Creative Communicator
  • Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.
Digital Citizen
  • Students engage in positive, safe, legal and ethical behavior when using technology, including social interactions online or when using networked devices.
Knowledge Constructor
  • Students plan and employ effective research strategies to locate information and other resources for their intellectual or creative pursuits.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

If someone told you that you had the power to change the world with kindness, would you believe them? We did and proved it to be true! Give us a few moments of your time and we will show you how fourth grade students became kindness cultivators with choice and voice and used technology to empower others to do the same. Through monthly activities such as Gratitude Snaps with Padlet, Capture Kindness challenges on Seesaw, and Kindness Fun with Flipgrid, students mastered their communication skills with written, verbal, and digital practice. Insights will be shared of how this focus increased student engagement while strengthening an understanding of social and emotional learning as well as the 5C’s of communication, collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and citizenship. Attendees will receive resources to help them replicate these activities including timelines, organizational management tips, electronic resources and more.
The purpose of this presentation is to empower teachers to integrate creative activities and projects in their classroom that connect kindness with academic content, showing step-by-step how it can be done successfully based on our experiences. We are a Title I school with limited parental support at home, requiring many service learning experiences to be completed during the school day. Despite our challenges of parental support, all students successfully created, implemented, and shared their Kindness Passion Projects with an authentic, live audience as well as virtually through our MES Kindness website. Through the ISTE presentation platform, we hope to engage and inspire attendees through hands-on participation and shared resources of ways they, and their students, can cultivate kindness using technology.
Our objective for creating A Passion for Kindness was simple: we needed a unique way to develop student agency in the educational setting. We recognized the importance of social and emotional learning and its natural alignment to kindness and citizenship. Over the course of one year, our students became researchers, writers, editors, collaborators, graphic designers, recording artists, and advocates for the greater good. They grew in their confidence as learners and presenters with student engagement at an all-time high. Digital tools included Seesaw, Flipgrid, Padlet, Answer Garden, Google Slides, Google Docs, Google Sites, Google Classroom, Facetime, Twitter, and Facebook.
Our success was showcased on our district’s social media outlets which led to requests by local news crews to film our learning experiences and interview us, and our students, about our kindness journey. These interactions were broadcast on the evening news by two separate media channels. Students saw first-hand the impact of their kindness towards others and grew in their ability to articulate their thoughts with persuasive speech which resulted in writing skills steadily improving throughout the year. Even students who faced language barriers and academic modifications thrived in this learning environment and fully participated in all activities. For the classroom teacher looking to empower student agency, enhance academic growth, and strengthen digital citizenship skills while creating a positive learning experience, "Cultivate Kindness with Technology Integration" might be the seed that blooms into global gardens!


This presentation will include the following:

Introduction (3 min)
-Interactive Answer Garden about Kindness

Passion and Purpose (15 min)
-Digital Citizenship Correlation to Passion and Purpose
-Tweet Time! Personal Passions Twitter Response

Cultivating Kindness (15 min)
-Examples of Kindness Activities shared, showcasing technology used (Seesaw, Flipgrid, G-Suite, Twitter, Facebook)
-Interactive Gratitude Padlet
-References to Kindness Organizations (RAK Foundation, The Great Kindness Challenge)
-Participants can access live links in the presentation

Student Passions (15 min)
-Kindness Passion Projects and Kindness Share Fair described in detail
-Tweet Time! Student Passions Twitter Response
-Participants can access live links in the presentation

Global Gardens of Inspiration (10 min)
-Focus on Empathy and Compassion in Global Awareness/Connection
-Kind Coins for Hurricane Harvey Recovery, Kindness Rocks for Parkland discussed
-Global Connection Organizations for Digital Citizenship (Grid Pals, Empatico, Kiva, SGDs)
-Participants can access live links in the presentation

Closing with Call to Action and Random Act of Kindness Giveaway (2 min)

Supporting research


The Random Act of Kindness Foundation
The Great Kindness Challenge
Make Caring Common (Harvard Graduate School of Education)
The Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (Stanford Medicine)
CASEL (Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning)
Sustainable Development Goals


The Kindness Cure by Tara Cousineau, PhD
UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World by Michele Borba, Ed.D.
Shame Nation: The Global Epidemic of Online Hate by Sue Scheff with Melissa Schorr
Dare to Be Kind: How Extraordinary Compassion Can Transform our World by Lizzie Velasquez
A Passion for Kindness by Tamara Letter, M.Ed. (to be released February 2019)

More [+]


Tamara Letter, Hanover County Public Schools

Tamara Letter is a passionate technology integrator with 21 years experience, specializing in creative learning experiences for students and teachers. As an Instructional Technology Resource Teacher (ITRT) with Hanover County Public Schools, she has presented numerous sessions on technology integration at local, state, and international conferences. She serves as the Social Media Chairperson for the Virginia Society for Technology in Education (VSTE) conference and was honored as Teacher of the Year 2018 for Mechanicsville Elementary School. Connect with Tamara on Twitter or Instagram (@tamaraletter) or her website:

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