Early in children’s lives we see the beginnings of compassion, empathy, and caring, but in order for those qualities to flourish and for the kids to become full ethical people, adults need to help them out.
When children can empathize with others, they’re more likely to be happier and more successful later on in life, having stronger relationships with others. It’s important to strive to cultivate children’s concern for others. As part of their Making Caring Common Project, Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education has shared a few guidelines to raise caring, respectful, and ethical children.
1. Strive to develop loving relationships with your children
If you want your kids to be caring and respectful, then treat them that way! Tend to their physical and emotional needs, provide a stable and loving family environment, show affection, talk about things that matter to them, and praise their efforts and accomplishments.
2. Be a strong moral role model
Children learn by observation, they will repeat the things they see other adults they respect do. Make sure that you are practicing honesty, fairness, and caring yourself! It’s important that when you catch yourself not being such a great role model in front of your kids, you acknowledge it and work on it!