One Heart – Building Compassion and Empathy (Awakening Joy Step 9, Compassion)
“This lesson helps us talk to the children about what can break our hearts and cause separation from our friends and family.”
“When I was a child in school in the 70s, I don’t ever remember being taught strategies for building compassion and empathy. I was told to be nice, and that was only if I was caught by the teacher doing something “bad.” However, for every child, “being nice” has a very different meaning and the act of “being nice” most often is a way a child stays out of trouble, which does not necessarily involve a lot of compassion or empathy for anyone.
Today I infuse my classroom lessons, as I know others do, with lessons on building compassion and empathy. Children come from many backgrounds, and often from homes and situations where empathy is lacking. These children find it particularly hard, and often find themselves having to stretch into a new level of consciousness, but as the months go by, I find children can and do build a huge sense of compassion for classmates, others and the earth by having the light of awareness shone on empathy.
This lesson helps us talk to the children about what can break our hearts and cause separation from our friends and family.” — Michele Lilyanna
PS – When James spoke with Michele to introduce her Awakening Joy for Kids lessons and guest posts, she mentioned that her copy of Awakening Joy was bulging with flagged pages. She wasn’t kidding!