"Empathy is at the heart of what it means to be human." - says study on How Parents can Cultivate Empathy in their Children, Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Empathy is also a core tenant of Danish parenting and is proactively taught from pre-school - like English or Math. As a result, this is often cited as a reason why the Danish have happier adult lives.
According to the NYTimes' parenting blog, the Harvard study gave 5 recommended tips to teach empathy:
1. Empathize with your child and model how to feel compassion for others
2. Make caring for others a priority and set high ethical standards
3. Provide opportunities to practice
4. Expand your child's circle of concern
5. Help children develop self control and manage feelings effectively
As Asher says in the video, Christmas is a time for giving. But for most children, Christmas is a time for getting - getting presents! So it's a perfect opportunity to check off each one of the five boxes in
So while parents may be concerned that their kids freak out at the thought of having to give up some of their Christmas presents, it's ok let them freak out, but take this opportunity to teach them bout the less fortunate, and allow them some time to realise how fortunate they are.
You should see how excited my kids are each time they get a donation and they realise that they put another child through school for another year. Doing such "good deeds" triggers the natural release of Oxytocin and so any person or child would naturally feel good, high, making it easier to teach and reinforce the notion of empathy.
I hope that parents and kids will be inspired when they see these videos. I certainly am.
Make a video like Lucy, Anya and Asha. It's great practice for video storytelling!
I'm putting together a kit of fundraising letters, thank you letters, that will be shared with anyone who joins the campaign.
If you have any questions about my GiveWHATforXmas campaign, please reach out on any of social media channels or my contact details on the about page!! We would love to have anyone from anywhere around the world join us! And you don't have to give up ALL of your presents!