Watch this video: “Be a Hummingbird” and discuss with your child/children what it means. Parent should pose questions to their children uch as:
“why do you think the hummingbird kept going when the other animals stopped?” or “do you think the hummingbird is helping everyone around him?“
If they struggles to answer these questions at first, then you can ask them to help you figure out what actions you as a parent could take to make a difference in this scenario.
Then once you have worked together through that thought process, pose the question back to them again of “what can you do to make an impact?”
Conclude with a concrete example of an action that they can hopefully implement as their project.
Creating Context: Exploring the lives of other children
Look at a day in the life.
Read a book that depicts a life that is a different culture to your own.
Check out the other participants.
Find some famous or relatable kids who are from different countries.
Talk about common humanity.
Drop a stone in water. Watch the ripples and see how far they go. Talk about the stone being our actions and our values. Discuss the thought of the first circle reaching our family, the second circle reaching our friends, the third our neighbors etc etc.
- How can we extend these ripples to make bigger circles?
- Reflect back to the people who live far away from us. How can we extend our circles to reach them?
more advance discussion
Slightly older children could benefit with the introduction to Ubuntu the African concept of compassion and humanity:
If you feel your child has a strong level of empathy and would be able to confidently handle a discussion on war then watch this:
Try and avoid dialogues that promote “othering”
Rather than using terms like: “those poor children…“. We encourage parents to use inclusive dialogue such as “isn’t it good we have … Schools, food and opportunities – I believe that all children should have this and it’s sad and must be hard for the children that don’t.”
Using the first example can make the child struggle to relate and can cause ‘Othering’ because the person becomes a concepts that may be far to abstract for children to fully be able to grasp or empathize with, depending on their level of processing. Talking about extreme hunger or having no parents to look after you can either be so hard to process and removed from the child’s own experience, that they may find it hard to process and internalize.
Your child may process this by thinking: “so those children must be different to be able to experience that” or as a protective mechanism that this only happens to the other people, not people like them. These are natural and healthy responses to things we can’t grasp or overwhelm us. The aim of this conversation is not to make children afraid, or overwhelmed. Famine, losing parents, homelessness etc are tragic and no child should experience them. Therefore take your child’s lead. If some of these things overwhelm them, talk about what the opposite looks like and how we can make it better. A very good video to watch on this topic – if you deem it appropriate – is the one above from Save The Children called “Most Shocking Second a Day Video” which depicts the experience of a child in Syria as if it was happening to a child in west London.
Very distant claims do not help
“Eat your dinner because someone else is starving!” this statement is flawed in many ways. Most kids aren’t eating due to a power struggle or a conflict of opinions and it is not appropriate or beneficial to bring in this concept as a threat or a way of shaming. It is also very difficult logic to comprehend for a child “how does my not eating, put food on that persons plate?”. They will probably also witness a lot of waste within their family home and in their communities, so for them to feel guilty about not eating their dinner when they see waste around then every day may be a confusing concept.
Even adults struggle to comprehend what it means to be hungry when they have always lived with plentiful food. A child will most likely not relate well to this example. Address the reason for the not wanting to eat separately and then you can talk about waste and hunger as its own discussion. You may chose to discuss as a family how to be mindful of our waste. The concept of living within our means. How we can be mindful of waste and the impact it has on the world.
Address these as separate and positive values. Asking how can we reduce our waste, or what if we didn’t buy that and bought this for someone else. These are tangible conversations that engage our children into critical thinking. Also don’t be surprised if your child catches you out with an area you are wasteful! That’s how you know you are having a really engaging conversation. Children can be our most authentic mirrors.
ask us for help or request an information pack
The information pack contains advice and guidance for you to help your child participate in 100KIDS100QUID. I you would like any other information about us or the projects we run then please feel free to request it below.
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