"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!
46 days, 80 donors later, so pleased to report the completion of one school. Post-campaign report can be found on LinkedIn under 8 Unexpected Lessons that I Learnt Fundraising.
Am also pleased to report that I have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Pencils of Promise that I will raise another US$25,000 before the end of the year.
My offer to teach website building centred around a Pencils of Promise fundraising campaign still stands.
However, since we are so close to the Christmas period, I've issued the ultimate Xmas challenge - ask your kids to give up their Christmas presents in exchange for donations. The child has "given up" the most and raised the most money will win a brand new BB-8 from secret Santa. Offer valid worldwide so sign up as a team member now!
I'm also encouraging all parents and kids to make and share their own videos (video storytelling will be big in 2016) so that other parents can be inspired by how some parents are able to teach empathy and get their kids to agree to give up their Christmas presents (which I agree is a big ask) and their kids can be inspired too. By the end of the campaign, the best video also gets a BB-8 prize from secret Santa!
Any one who wants to give up their Christmas presents (adults too) can sign up at my GiveWHATforXmas page as a team member.
Sick of Christmas shopping? Instead of a present, make a $25 donation in honor of your friend or family. At point of donation, you can choose to "honor" someone and they will receive a notification email like this.
Re: Deborah Kay made a donation in honor of Peter and Dorothy Kay
No Christmas shopping for me this year! Join me!
This is a simple blog to track my fundraising activities and to keep family, friends and supporters updated on my progress.