Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Guest Post from Emily Patterson...

Hey Everyone,
I am sorry that I have not posted is soooo long! I have been crazy busy with trying to get the new house buying together and the little ones, and now to add more we got a new puppy, a great pyrenees, and I caught a cold! Ugh, my mother keeps telling me to relax and not do things so fast, but I just have to I am the type who needs continuous action. And between my husband and my self we don't do anything small we go BIG! LOL. Glad to post again... I have a guest post today. Look for her post on my site... All things with love... :-)

Submitted on behalf of Primrose Schools: extraordinary quality preschool services by Emily Patterson 

Despite the school systems' best efforts of zero tolerance, every day we hear horror stories about severe bullying and hurtful cliques in schools. And, as technology advances, children seem to become more and more disconnected from society and interacting with other face-to-face. It appears that compassion for our fellow man is being slowly sifted out of our youth, and we, as parents, have to be the ones to stop this alarming trend.
Raising compassionate children should start early, and volunteering is a wonderful vehicle in which to learn compassion. By giving their time freely to help others, children will begin to understand that they can make a positive impact in their community, and that there's a bigger picture out there beyond their little world.
First, if you ask your child if they would like to volunteer, be ready for questions. Children always want to know why, and if you just say, "Because I said so," they will fail to fully comprehend or appreciate the endeavor. You should try to explain why you would like your child to do this. You could relate how volunteers have changed the world for the better and that helping your community can help a person to feel good about themselves.
Second, in order to encourage this sense of compassion, the kind of volunteering you choose should also be interesting and fun for the child. If they feel it’s a chore, it will become a negative experience and they won't gain any insight from it. Also, the volunteering you and your child choose should be meaningful and represent your core values. For example, if you and your child really care for animals, working at an animal shelter would probably be a good experience for the child.
Another factor to consider in child's choice of volunteer work is the comfort zone level for the child. It should be safe, age approximate, and not beyond their realm of understanding. Placing a child in a volunteer situation where they will become stressed and frustrated will not foster a positive view towards volunteering in the future. Children as young as 3 years old have the ability to volunteer in some way, just make sure you start them out simply and not overwhelm them with a lot of information or tasks.
Finally, the organization you plan on signing your child up for should be kid friendly. The leaders of the group should be comfortable and proficient with child volunteers so the children will feel comfortable in that environment. If during this experience, they are made to feel like they are a pest or are simply ignored, then the child will won't want to volunteer again. 
Look for Emily Pattersons post regularly starting October 25, 2011

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