Have you ever had this experience: you're just going about your day, maybe doing errands or at the grocery store, and your child points at someone who looks different and asks loudly, "What's wrong with that person?" or "Why does he need a wheelchair?" Your first reaction might be to hush your child and apologize to the person, or simply hope he or she didn't notice your child's remark. While this response is understandable, telling a child to be quiet and look away can actually entrench shame around the question of difference, for both your child and the other person. Instead of silencing our children and ignoring their curiosity, we should embrace uniqueness in a positive way.
In The Courage to Be Kind, authors Jenny Levin and Rena Rosen teach children and parents how to respond when they see someone who looks different. Learn with Sam and Ellie as they encounter and interact with several kids in different ways. Ellie is blunt and sometimes accidentally offensive. Sam tries to find common ground with each person and provides an excellent role model for children. As you read the book with your child, you will both learn strategies for navigating challenging situations with kindness and compassion.
The book includes photographs and a list of frequently asked questions so kids and parents can learn about various differences they may encounter together. Through a series of scenarios, The Courage to Be Kind offers a tool to facilitate conversations about kindness and to teach the art of compassion. We recommend it heartily!