Roots of Empathy

One of our Empathy ReBoot Project initiatives starting this year is Roots of Empathy (ROE). Mrs. Grainger's classroom has been invited to participate in ROE with a baby named Taye and his mom. We hope to continue working with ROE in subsequent years with expanded numbers of our Glendale students. Interestingly, one of our Glendale kindergarten kids was a ROE participant baby with Mrs. Grainger in a different school five years ago.

The ROE program teaches children about feelings; their own feelings, and the feelings of others.  Once every three weeks, baby Taye and his mom will visit the classroom.  Marcia Jansen, a trained ROE instructor will gather the children in the classroom around a green blanket and together they watch the baby grow.

The children predict and cheer when their ROE baby reaches the ‘developmental milestones’ of the first year: “He can roll over!” “He got his first tooth!” “He can sit up!” “He can crawl!!”
The  ROE Instructor also coaches the children in observing the baby and reading the cues the baby gives as to how the baby is feeling: “Is the baby happy or sad?” “How can you tell?” We use this discussion as a lever for the children to talk about their own emotions and to understand how their classmates feel: "Do you smile when you’re happy?" "How can you tell if your  friend is happy?" Being able to understand how other people are feeling is called empathy.  Marcia also visits the classroom before and after each Family Visit to prepare and reinforce teachings using a specialized lesson plan for each visit.

For more than ten years across Canada and internationally, thousands of children  are  learning  respect and care for one another with the lessons started through their Roots of Empathy baby.

We are excited that we’ve been chosen to participate in Roots of Empathy. If you have any questions or would like more information, please let us know.

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