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Developing Empathy

child-made card

Empathy has always ranked high on the list of life skills I hope to help my children develop, but it’s hard to know where to start. Thankfully, life brings lessons of its own.

Johnny and Lily were both sick – Johnny came down with a fever right after school on Monday, and Lily followed soon afterwards. They were both sick all week – now clearly on the mend, but not yet completely well. I’m really hoping it’s the same virus Emma had a couple weeks, ago, because that would (theoretically) mean that she has some immunity and so won’t be sick this upcoming week!

Since Emma was recently quite ill, she had a lot of compassion for her sick siblings – especially Johnny, who was particularly miserable. She made him this very sweet card:

child-made card

I love that she wrote such an upbeat, loving little note, and even thought to find a green marker (Johnny’s favorite color) to write with!

She also made him this adorable, incredibly tiny robot guy:

tiny little robot guy

Lily has been eyeing Johnny’s cardboard laptop for weeks now, so Emma made her one of her own out of a sheet of construction paper – in pink, of course! Lily was absolutely thrilled!

construction paper laptop

Emma was so happy to see Johnny and Lily cheered up by her thoughtful gifts! Didn’t she pick the perfect shirt to wear that day?

It was hard to see the kids sick yet again. I’m exhausted after a week of nearly no sleep, and I truly hope we can stay healthy for a while now! But it made my day to see my child loving and caring for others! Thank you, Emma!

Afterschool Blog Hop

How was your week? Hopefully much healthier than ours! Be sure to drop by Little Wonders’ Days – they are this week’s host of the Afterschool Blog Hop!

MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.

16 thoughts on “Developing Empathy”

  1. They’re so sweet. It warms my heart when my kids show love to each other. You’re doing such an amazing job.

  2. I love this post! Some of my very favorite mothering moments are when my kids act like this to each other.

  3. Didi {Duck Duck Octopus}

    This is such a sweet story. Thank you for sharing, and I am glad to read they are feeling better this morning!

  4. Elisa | blissfulE

    Lovely! Before we can reach out to others we have to have some idea how they feel, and Emma knew just how to help her brother and sister during their illnesses. So proud of her!

  5. Your kids are so sweet! Empathy is so important and I love when I see Abby displaying it. It’s like a little pat on the back for us Moms and Dads.

    I’m sorry the kids were sick again. Poor babies :( I’m glad they are getting better though!

    1. They seem much better this morning – here’s hoping they stay that way for a while, this time!

  6. Yup, more than IQ, we do need to develop our kids’ EQ. Empathy is definitely one life skill worthy of instilling in our kids. My daughter is also starting to show empathy towards me and other kids, and I couldn’t be more proud :)

  7. I love it that you value this so much, Mary Anne!!! Yes, empathy and sibling friendship are also a high priority for me. At the moment I am trying to figure out how to help Quinn and Audrey recognize and respect Phinia’s comfort zone because they sometimes go overboard with their excitement (about something or about Phinia directly).

    I think you and Mike are such great parents!!!

    1. Thanks, Tara!

      I think different comfort zones can be very challenging to work out! I know you will do a fabulous job working with your girls on this!

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