In the fall of 2006, a group of grade eight students at Pitt River Middle School decided to undertake an experiment - a year’s worth of anonymous, random acts of kindness.
Follow their uplifting journey that demonstrates that:
helping others promotes happiness,
early adolescence is an ideal time for promoting kindness, and
building relationships ultimately promotes resilience.
This is the story of “The Breakfast Club.”
Read more on happiness, stress and resilience to inspire your own school experiment.
Science show "the benefits of altruism for creating happiness." Dr. Kim Schonert-Reichl, The Breakfast Club
In a study of 457 teens, altruism was positively linked with health in teen girls and with well-being for both teen boys and girls. "Family helping" was the most significant factor which showed positive associations with friendships, purpose in life and self-acceptance.
"Early adolescence is a stressful transitional time, it is a stress pileup." Dr. Kim Schonert-Reichl, The Breakfast Club
The early adolescence is a period of low emotional stability among youth who experience a range of emotions. The findings of longitudinal research suggest that this change and flux slows in late adolescence, however children and youth who have difficulty with adaptation during this period, experience enduring negative consequences later in life. These results emphasize the important role for stress prevention during these years.
"The dynamic nature of resiliency and relationships is the core and key element of resilience: with teachers, with the janitor with each other...and with their parents." Dr. Kim Schonert-Reichl, The Breakfast Club
Research shows that an adolescent's inner strength and resilience are shaped most notably by positive expectations and supportive relationships.