As we close out 2020, parents and teachers eagerly await holiday rest. What a year... And yet the children seem unfazed. They are as delighted as ever by the approach of the holidays and radiate expectation. Our Core Virtues December focus on generosity, charity, and service will kindle that joy too. Counter-intuitive as it may seem, there's plenty of empirical evidence that "it is in giving that we receive." Our sense of purpose, meaning, and joy is heightened when we focus on the needs of others. (See below.) So let's encourage children and ourselves to be the light in the darkness of 2020 through deeds of kindness.
Recent work in psychology suggests that life-long giving is a path to happiness. Here's a great grown-up read.
The Giving Way to Happiness. Stories and Science Behind the Life-Changing Power of Giving. Jenny Santi. TarcherPerigee, 2016.
"It is in giving that we receive," we are often told. Science is now proving that adage correct. Philanthropy adviser Jenny Santi looks at the many ways people are "transformed by joy" when they turn outward, seeking to ameliorate the needs of others. The author shows how compassion in action restores the human spirit. The book is chock full of marvelous examples.
This December marks the one-year anniversary of our Holidays Tab. You'll find wonderful Hanukkah and Christmas-related stories for your morning gathering there.
This month we introduce a new website resource: our "Schools of Faith" tab. Core Virtues is a non-sectarian approach to character education, but a number of faith-based schools use the Core Virtues program. Their religious traditions are rich sources of stories and biographies to reinforce the virtues. Some of the works featured in this section could also be used in public school settings. This new tab is a work in progress, and we invite your input at email@example.com