GRAND CHUTE, Wis. - In the busy classrooms at Houdini Elementary School in Grand Chute, there's something special going on.
"It's really exciting and fun," said 3rd grader Lauren Struensee.
It isn't learning to solve a math problem or what a compound sentence is, although both are important, but on Sharing Kindness Day, it's much deeper than that.
"I really hope that the kids get a sense of how wonderful it feels to be kind to one another, that not only do you make somebody else feel good, but you can walk away with a sense of being proud knowing that you made somebody else's day," said Interim Principal Katie Hardesty.
NBC26 tagged along with third and fourth graders who visited multiple activity stations on Tuesday.
Graham Goldschmidt and his classmates wrote thank you cards to public service workers including police officers.
"Because lives are very important and they're saving a lot of them, so they should just get thanks every single day," he explained.
Down the hall, students turned old T-shirts into dog toys for animals still waiting for a home at the Fox Valley Humane Association. They also tied fleece blankets for sick kids who are forced to spend the holidays in the hospital.
"It makes me feel happy because we're helping other children," 3rd grader Jocelyn Nooyen said.
In Mr. Wolfert's classroom, students used computers to create posters with inspirational quotes. They will hang the messages throughout their school.
Downstairs in the gym, students took part in team building exercises. Hardesty said the projects compliment Houdini's anti-bullying efforts.
"We really utilize a restorative practices approach and teach kids to talk to one another about how they're feeling, or what they're thinking, and how actions have affected them."
This was the school's first ever Sharing Kindness Day.
"It teaches you to be kind and helpful, and that it will prepare you for the future," Struensee said.
The third and fourth graders capped off the day by taking a field trip to the movie theater to see 'Wonder.' It's a story about a boy with facial deformities, his struggle to fit in, and the importance of choosing to be kind to others.
Hardesty said the film complimented the goal of their special day which was to help students learn the life-long skills of acceptance, courage, and the value of making a difference. She said that's the Houdini way.