Students at Houdini Elementary School in Grand Chute are doing their part to bring happiness to others during the holidays. Just before Thanksgiving, school buses pulled into Carolina Assisted Living. Life Enrichment and Spiritual Care Director Bob Archer greeted the third and fourth graders at the front door.
"Welcome everybody. Wow, you brought the whole school."
The children played card games, colored and did word searches with the senior citizens as part of Houdini's 2nd annual Spreading Kindness Day.
"It feels good," said fourth grader Owen Peterson.
"I think it's really fun to make people happier than they were before and to make their day better," added student Naomi Konkle.
Aubrey Scherer gave a senior a homemade card that wished him a happy Thanksgiving. The reaction she got in return warmed her heart.
"I learned that it's not all about us sometimes," she explained. "You make sure that other people get some love too."
One of those people who felt the love that day was resident Stella Ruth Hoffman.
"I just enjoyed sitting there and watching all of them interact."
Resident Wilma Allwardt did too.
"I am just amazed at their energy that they have. They should bottle it and give it to us," she chuckled.
The laughter in the room was like chicken soup for the soul.
"It's good for the mental health which helps with the physical health and when you have a happy person, you have a happy life," Archer explained.
He said some of the elders don't have family stopping by, so these visits mean so much. They also allow the seniors to pass on their wisdom to a younger generation which gives them a sense of pride knowing that they're still an important and contributing member of society.
"I like it when they come here. They're just fun to have around," said Allwardt.
Archer hopes the children learned that age is just a number.
"It doesn't matter if I'm 8-years-old or 98-years-old, we can all relate together and have fun."
Teacher Abby Vanevenhoven was touched by the smiles on her students' faces.
"I really hope that they're able to see how good it feels to be kind, and it'll just start to spread more kindness."
When asked why that's important, Kayden Smit answered, "To make the world a better place."
It's an answer that earned her an A+ in the eyes of Allwardt.
"I hope they know that we appreciate them coming here very much and come again any time," she laughed.