Your Role (and the Roles of Others) in Raising a Compassionate ChildPosted on November 17, 2015 by Michelle Kraus
At first glance, children don’t seem very compassionate. But you shouldn’t let the temper tantrums over sharing fool you: children are actually far more compassionate than many think.
However, not all children are as compassionate as others. Their environments and upbringing has a lot to do with how they interact with others and become social, compassionate individuals.
So how are you supposed to foster and widen the type of environments and interactions that put your own child(ren) on a path to compassion? In this article, we’ll share three tips from Julia Luckenbill, a Child Development Demonstration Lecturer, that discuss just that.
1. Be a good role model for children (and find programs with equally good role models).
Children are known to imitate what they see around them. This means that as a parent, it’s your responsibility to model behavior you want for your children and put them in environments with other positive role models.
This looks like using gentle touching, a calm voice, helpful approach, and openly sharing with those around you. Should your child be in a care center, the instructors should emulate these same qualities to reinforce what you do at home in a learning environment as well.
2. Model compassion around those who are upset
Showing children is better than telling and when it comes to teaching compassion, this is no different. After all, children might have a difficult time recognizing when their peers are having a problem and by demonstrating compassion, you can help them better recognize when to offer help to a friend in need.
In her article “10 Tips for Raising a Compassionate Infant-Toddler,” Julia presents the following example as a way to model compassion: If you see that a child has fell and hurt him or herself, it’s important to walk up with your child to see if they are ok.
This is especially important in child care environments where children interact with each other on a regular basis. When the instructors and assistants at these centers model compassion as you would, your child will have much more practice with the concept and develop rapidly in their ability to empathize with others.
3. Model gentle touching and other positive behaviors
If there’s one issue most toddlers face, it’s gentle touching. When they pet animals, they tend to do so in a rough way. When they want to move, they turn to pushing rather than walking around someone in their way.
By modeling gentle touching on animals and showing toddlers to leave toys in the hands of others and not push but rather walk around others in their way, you can model positive behavior that reinforces compassion.
Of course, these are behaviors that are common among other toddlers, especially pushing and grabbing toys. As such, compassion must be modeled and reinforced in child care to ensure your little one is able to better understand compassion in action.
At Ladybug Child Care Center, our Enrichment Programs are designed to foster compassion in all children
At Ladybug Child Care Center, we understand that your “little bug’s” daily environment is one of the biggest influencers on their behavior.
Our daily Enrichment Programs ensure your child gets the attention and nurturing they deserve. In particular, our program Peace Factors reinforces compassion by guiding children as they practice decision-making in situations premised on care and compassion for others.
A program you can trust for proper guidance and support for your developing infant or toddler
When you’re looking for a child care center you can trust for the ongoing development of your infant or toddler, Ladybug is the right fit for you! Since 1981, we’ve been carefully cultivating the growth and development of children and when it comes to compassion, we’re no different.
Contact us today to set up a tour or to learn more about our programs. We look forward to speaking with you!Filed Under: Tips for Parents