Happy Friday to all of you out there, and I hope wherever you are reading this you’re warm and cozy and drinking some hot chocolate or hot tea, because damn it’s freezing ’round these parts.
We are 10 days from Hanukkah, 12 days from Christmas, and the holiday cheer is all around us. Hell, my town turns off all parking meters the last three weeks of the year, and that’s all kinds of awesome.
We start Good News Friday with a sweet story of a kindergarten student in Kent County, Mich., named Michael Clark Jr.
Michael was about to be legally adopted by his parents, Andrea Melvin and David Eaton last week, and he wanted all his friends to be there to witness it.
So he invited the whole kindergarten class down to the courthouse to watch. And so they all came. A class field trip, if you will.
So with a few 5-year-olds speaking up for Michael, and Chase from “Paw Patrol” looking on as well (no adoption too small!), Michael’s wonderful family became legally his.
The kids with the paper hearts… I mean, is there a limit to how adorable something can be?
**Next up today, I’m a tiny bit conflicted about this next story because I hate Wal-Mart so much, but this is a wonderful gesture by a football star that it’s too good to ignore.
Khalil Mack is a destroyer of quarterbacks for the Chicago Bears, but he also is a generous man eager to share his wealth.
Recently he did a wonderful thing for customers of a Fort Pierce, Fla. Wal-Mart store (Fort Pierce is Mack’s hometown).
Through his charitable foundation, Mack paid off the layaway item costs for everyone who had merchandise at the store, a grand total of around $80,000.
Excellent job, Khalil. Now go eat some more quarterbacks.
**Finally today, a terrific idea from a principal in Iowa. From Upworthy.com.
“When Iowa Valley Junior-Senior High School principal Janet Behrens observed her students in the cafeteria, she was dismayed to see that they spent more time looking down at their phones than they did looking at and interacting with each other. So last year, she implemented a new policy that’s having a big impact.
According to KCRG News, “No Phones, New Friends Friday” requires students to put away their devices one day a week and sit with people they don’t normally hang out with. When students enter the lunch room on Fridays, they get a colored card that assigns them to a specific table. Each table also has conversation starters to help kids break the ice and interact.”
Such a little thing. Such a big thing. Getting teenagers out of their habits and routines, and making them more aware of the world around them, and how the kid sitting two tables over might be a nice person worth getting to know, is huge. It helps combat loneliness and isolation for some kids, no doubt.
“Everybody enjoys it,” junior Page Weick told KCRG.”I think people have a lot more respect for others.”
Freshman Sahara Kanke said at first she didn’t want to do it at all, but has since come around to loving the Friday lunches. “I think it’s fun, I like doing it,” she said. “People are more nice to each other now because they got to know each other at lunch.”
Outstanding. I hope this idea catches on nationwide.