Understanding How Children Develop Empathy, Compassion & Kindness
Posted by: Sue Atkins
Empathy, sympathy, compassion, kindness and charity begin at home, and very early !
Here’s an interesting article from The New York Times
The mother was trying to hold the baby still, and I was pulling gently on the ear, angling for a better look at the infant’s eardrum. The wriggling baby didn’t like any of it, and her whimpering quickly turned to full-fledged wails.
Suddenly the baby’s 3-year-old brother, an innocent bystander in no danger of having his own ears examined, began to wail as well, creating the kind of harmonic cacophony that makes passers-by wince in recognition. And the poor mother, her hands full, could only look over and reassure him: Your sister is O.K., don’t worry, don’t feel bad.
But really, was that why the 3-year-old was crying? Was he tired and frustrated, scared by the noise, jealous of his mother’s attention? Or was he, in fact, upset because his sister was upset — an early step toward empathy, sympathy, kindness and charity?
Read more here