News Headlines and Children’s Hearts
The tragic and frightening events that have captured news headlines over this past week have cast a heavy weight on the hearts of each one of us here at LAUP. When violence is witnessed in person or on television, it can have damaging effects, particularly for our young children who carry these images with them as they grow. So whether we are educators, parents, friends, relatives, policy makers or other stakeholders, it is our job to ensure that young children are exposed to healthy and loving experiences, and that we can support and nurture our children as much as possible, especially in times like these.
While each of us may be having difficulty processing the images we have witnessed in recent weeks, it is important to remember that we need to rise above it all, and find the strength to give hope and continue to invest in our children. LAUP has gathered some tools that will help facilitate meaningful conversations and provide support to the children and families within your care:
- Tips to Help Children Cope With Disasters (NAEYC)
- PBS offers a series of strategies for discussing today’s headlines:
- Tips for Parents and Caregivers on Media Coverage of Traumatic Events (National Traumatic Stress Network)
- Tips for Talking to Children and Youth After Traumatic Events: A Guide for Parents and Educators (SAMHSA.gov)
- Mass Shooting and Violence Resources (usa.childcareaware.org)
It is my hope that each of us can use these resources, and our own good nature, to turn the tragic images in our news into teachable moments for our children, and to help them rewrite the narrative of fear. As Nelson Mandela said, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” So let us teach children to use their power in positive ways by pouring goodness and moral citizenship into them at a young age. As adults, let us display positive interactions with children, encourage them to ask questions, and listen to their fears and hopes. We can change the world, and our children can be instruments to build a hopeful future. Let us summon the power of love to enable our children to be the peace makers and justice seekers of their generation.
My thanks to you for your continued commitment to doing what is best for our children. LAUP stands at your side in support of your journey to help change the world by positively impacting the lives, hearts, and development of young children.
Scott L. Hippert, CEO