For our last week in February, we focused on Empathy in the classrooms! The teachers planned a special art project with the children called Empathy X-ray Art. The teachers first discussed with the children the different types of feelings and emotions. We discussed what are good feelings, like excited, loved, brave, and strong. We also discussed what are some not-so-good feelings, like fear, sadness, and anger. Then we asked what it looks like on the inside of your body when you’re feeling brave or scared?
To complete the Art project, the teachers first asked if they have ever heard of an x-ray machine and then explained that it scans your body to see what’s going on in the inside. The teachers then provided the children with an outline of a body on a piece of paper along with markers and asked them to draw what it looks like when someone is being kind to you? What about if someone hurt your feelings, draw what that would look like? Once the art was complete, the children then explained to the group what s/he was feeling on the outside and inside in that moment.
This art project is so helpful with explaining how other people feel and how we can have compassion for others. We encourage you at home to discuss empathy/compassion with your little ones by having them draw out their feelings/emotions.
Some other fun empathy activities you can do at home with your children are:
- Empathy Beads Bracelet- provide the children with beads and a pipe cleaner. Explain that each colored bead represents a feeling by using a visual (for example, purple beads represent brave and blue beads represent sadness). Have them fill up their pipe cleaner with the “feelings” beads. Once they are finished, you can wrap it around their wrist. This will help others to understand how they are feeling!
- Feelings Identification Matching Card Game- You can create these cards on your own by drawing a visual with the feelings word or print them off by google searching feelings cards. This activity will help littles to understand different types of feelings.
- Random Act of Kindness Board- Every morning before school, your child can look over the board and pick a Random Act of Kindness they would like to complete before the end of the day. It could be, play with a new friend during outdoor play or help someone else clean up, or make a card for one of their teachers.
- Kindness Jar Project- Similar to the board idea, this one would be picking a Random Act of Kindness piece of paper out of a jar and completing it before the end of the day.
- Kindness Paper Chain- Create a paper chain of kindness by adding a strip with what Random Act of Kindness you completed that day. Hang the paper chain up and see how long it gets!
As we move into March, we will be focusing on the topics of a Growth Mindset versus a Fixed Mindset as well as Stress/Worry. Stay tuned!!!