Teaching Children Empathy And How To Develop It
Empathy is cultivating the ability in children that makes them understand other people’s point of view and knowing how they feel and what they react to positive and helpful. This is a significant trait that we don’t get to see in our kids today. Empathy is an important trait that needs to be taught to children of all ages. Teaching children empathy and building awareness of others with the kids is very necessary.
Empathy will help change the aggressive actions of the children. They will start to feel and develop a sense of responsibility for others.
Parents don’t understand their children’s feelings
The first challenge to the growth of empathy in childhood is that the parents are not able to understand the child’s feelings. Empathy is connected to emotions and feelings. The mother is a homemaker occupied with cooking and other domestic chores thus she may be unable to figure out her child’s emotions and feelings.
Parents don’t spend quality time with their children
Only parents can teach their children empathy and only they are the ones who will be interested in the intellectual growth and development of their children. Both working moms and non-working moms spend less time talking to their children due to their busy schedule and household chores. Father is busy in the office work, they come home tired and unable to give their children quality time.
What a mother doesn’t realize in understanding her child’s behaviour
Empathy is not an inherent, fixed characteristic. It is a strength with which some individuals are born with, and others lack. In any case, it is not something that immediately unfolds. It’s not just a single talent or strength. A mother can be unwell and upset. Her busy schedule makes her exhausted and sick. She has to face extended family issues if she is living with her in-law’s house. All such issues result in mothers not giving proper time to the nourishment of children intellectually.
Lack of the role of a father in the well-being of a child
Evidence shows that the father’s involvement in the well-being of a child is very important. The foundation of the mental-state and well-being of a child weakens while the father isn’t there. Fathers should strongly connect to with their children and share quality time with them and parents should improve the house environment and teach children empathy from an early age. Both the husband and wife must spend some quality time with children regardless of gender discrimination. Both a son and a daughter should be treated equally and the purpose of empathy will be the same for both of them alike. Empathy can be nurtured in children of any age.
For example, if your child sees his class fellow crying at school, you should teach that he should show empathy to that crying child and understand his feelings and try to relieve his pain with compassion and care.
Child of considerate parents is more empathetic
A child, whose parents are very considerate about him, will be empathetic towards others at an early age. This skill gradually fosters in him and makes him a strong and better person. Consequently, he will grow to be a very strong and confident person. He will treat everyone with compassion, respect and he will understand others feelings and will be more productive.
Teaching empathy is the responsibility of parents and teachers
Parents and teachers should try their best to teach and show empathy to children so that they can grow as a strong person and become productive and helpful to children.
Don’t give children in the care of maids and servants
The child shouldn’t be given in the care of servants or maids. Never leave your children unattended and never leave them in the care of maids or governesses. Don’t let them get influenced by the behaviour of servants and maids around them.
A mother needs to talk to her child and understand his emotional needs. Sometimes a child cries to seek his mother’s attention. And as soon as he receives the attention of his mother, he stops crying and becomes calm. In this situation, a mother should use her body language. To develop empathy in a child, parents need to connect with their children. A mother should give attention and acknowledge their trivial efforts towards anything to develop empathy. The mother should talk to the child and should not disconnect with the child on an emotional level but acknowledge the child’s emotions and feelings.
If a mother is unable to give quality time to her child, she should explain to him the reason that she was busy or sick. Mother’s behaviour should be friendly towards a child so that her child communicates with her easily. Mothers should understand her child’s needs.
Parents and teachers are role models
Parents and teachers should teach children empathy and how to be empathic towards others. They should try to be role models for children and exercise empathy towards them in every situation, whether good or bad. Parents should show their children how to be an empathic person by assisting family members and neighbours and those in need or having a bad time. When a mother is empathetic towards others (e.g. Her in-laws or husband), her self esteem increases and her emotional connection with others becomes strong.
If children are upset, know the reason for their discomfort and try to solve the issue. Some kids tend to grow empathy more spontaneously than others, but these children learn to deal with others with compassion and respect, seeing their parents and the people around them.
Keep children engaged in productive activities
As a family concentrates on engaging children together to create an environment that promotes the sensitivity and awareness of children from their families and peers. Help build a sense of integrity that relies on self-control within themselves, not in monetary rewards. Empathy is not something that naturally evolves without environmental feedback.
Good empathy skills make a child a successful person
Good empathy skills will make a child successful and help foster confidence while also improve his communication skills. Family, friends, and even siblings will play a vital role in helping each other achieve. Help your child understand the feelings of others. Lack of empathy towards a child makes him a bad person. Teaching and developing empathy in children for others since their childhood is very necessary. Teach them to accept their class fellows and their cousins. Have them learn how and when to give support to others. Teach the child to do quality work with the help of others. Give them some projects to help them work as a team.
Teaching empathy to children by several more situations
If a child comes to his mother and says that he won’t be participating in sports anymore, the mother should be empathetic towards her child and try to remove the fears for not participating in sports by instilling positive thinking.
The mother should gradually give solutions to the child according to his emotional needs and give hope to the child and teach him how to deal with things. Even if someone yells or shouts at school, he should not react in a bad way; instead, he should remain quiet in unfavourable situations.
If a child does not want to visit any of his relatives, the mother should show empathy towards him by understanding the child’s feelings and try to create positive feelings about his relatives and friends
Therefore, by being empathy mentors, we can promote empathy. This means recognizing rather than ignoring the negative views of our children and involving them in dialogue about the social effects of feelings. This also implies helping children find proactive ways to cope with their bad moods.