Posts tagged: Connection

Imagining Wellbeing with IF

Studies show that around 65% of children develop imaginary friends (IFs) before they are seven. These sometimes quite…

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Everyday Rituals

When we think of rituals, we often recall major life or religious events like weddings, funerals, baptisms, bar…

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Children’s Resistance to Spirituality

Children, like adults, vary in their attraction to spirituality. Some revel in many different kinds of experiences,…

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Kids, Ramadan & Food Insecurity

As the war between Israel and Palestine continues, many Palestinian parents struggle to feed their families. Violence…

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Helping Kids Understand Symbols

Symbols are all around us, but sometimes they can be hard to understand. We need to know something about their cultural…

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More Gratitude, Please

My mother firmly believed that children should write thank you notes for any gifts we received. If we didn’t get them…

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The Science of Gratitude

“Tank you” said my daughter’s two year old friend as I passed out cookies to everyone in our neighborhood…

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Santa Spirituality

For many families, Christmas is - in whole or in part - a cultural rather than a religious holiday. And at the center…

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Holiday ‘Marker Talks’

Many of the children I teach come from households that celebrate multiple religious and cultural holidays. Others have…

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Practicing Thanks-Giving

“Let’s go around the room and say something we’re thankful for,” says the teacher. “I’m thankful for apple…

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Making Belonging a Priority

Three weeks after my middle child started third grade, she was so anxious and upset that she couldn’t concentrate on…

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Exploring Teamwork with Paw Patrol: The Mighty Movie

Preparing for a family get-together, I gave each child a different job. My youngest collected cups and my third…

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Resisting Bias with Brian the Brave

Children begin learning about differences at a young age. Figuring out how to categorize things is one of the ways they…

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How Curiosity Enhances Relationships

My daughter and her best friend met in 2nd grade. Their first weeks together were spent asking each other questions:…

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Community-Building

School buses are back on the streets and pumpkin spice lattes have returned to coffee shops. Children’s backpacks are…

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Counting Kindness with Kids

Countless families and children become refugees when extreme poverty or violence force them to leave their homes. The…

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Exploring Every Little Kindness with Kids

Sometimes a story doesn’t need words to be powerful. That’s the case with Marta Bartolj’s Every Little Kindness,…

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Movement Meditation: Connection

Movements can be powerful teachers. Our bodies remember and repeat motions associated with specific practices, such as…

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Exploring the Goodness of Most People

Stranger danger lessons, active shooter drills - these experiences can teach children that others are to be feared.…

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Connecting with Nature through My Friend Earth

Learning about the seasons of the year is a common focus in many preschool and elementary programs.  My Friend Earth,…

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Going on a Rainforest Adventure with Forest

Brendan Kearney’s Forest is part of a series that chronicles the adventures of fisher Finn and his dog, Skip. In this…

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Exploring Bad Days with Everything Will Be OK

Some days are just yucky. Things happen that children can’t control and don’t like. They might be little things,…

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Connecting with Nature through Apple and Magnolia

One summer, my kids and I planted a small garden. While our cucumbers and zucchini did well, our tomato plants…

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Family Hygge

It’s snowing outside, and all anyone wants to do is bundle up in a blanket, sip hot chocolate, and read. Maybe…

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Exploring People Are Wild with Children

“Do they bite?” asked Marcus* when we spotted a family of mule deer during a camping trip. Our group was excited…

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Celebrating Kwanzaa with Children

Seven candles stand tall in a kinara, ready for lighting. Their number and colors (red, black, and green) suggest this…

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Encouraging Empathy When It’s Hard

Holiday shows play on our sense of connection to beloved characters. Kids who have been left out or bullied know how…

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Celebrating Native American Heritage

When I was growing up, November was a month filled with images of ‘pilgrims’ and ‘Indians’ sharing a…

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Encouraging Authenticity

Authenticity is trending as a value. Parents and children want to speak their truth and advocate for what they believe…

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Children, Community Science & Climate Change

Earlier this month, the Pacific Ocean made news because it is shrinking faster than scientists expected. One reason…

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Preparing Preschoolers for Spiritual Learning

Working with preschoolers can be a blast! Many are full of curiosity about everything and eager to explore. Even the…

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Emoji Spirituality

Kids love emojis. As fun visual substitutes for words, they help children share how they’re feeling and communicate…

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Sharing Personal Spiritual Practices

Children’s group leaders often wonder how much to share about their personal lives with young people. We…

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Celebrating Black History Year-Round

With the calendar shift from February to March, we’ve gone from remembering Black history to lifting up women and…

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Spiritual Storytelling with The Last Cuentista

For a book lover like me, one bedtime story often turned into two or three as I tucked my young children in. But I…

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Reading The Proudest Blue

Wearing hijab is a spiritual statement for Muslim girls and women. It is a sign of faith and a practice of…

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Avoiding Seductive Details

Drawing children into learning activities can sometimes feel like Sisyphus rolling an immense boulder uphill. Just when…

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Developing Spiritual Persistence

I am often so excited when I begin a new spiritual practice, I expect to see immediate benefits. In my enthusiasm, I…

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Chapter Books about Refugees & Asylum Seekers

Older children often wonder about the reasons refugees and asylum seekers have left their homelands. They are able to…

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Picture Books about Refugees

With stories about refugees and immigrants frequently in the news, children are certain to wonder about why they’ve…

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Welcoming Afghan Refugees

Many of the refugees airlifted to the U.S. out of Afghanistan last month are currently housed at Fort Lee in Virginia,…

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Strengthening Connections

“I forgot my mask” yelled my daughter as she ran home from the bus stop, then back out again, mask in hand. Going…

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Back to the ‘Kinda’ Familiar

As a new school year begins, many organizations are planning to welcome children back to in-person programs. But…

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Talking with Kids Under 10

Talking with children seems simple enough, but effective communication is actually more complicated than we think. Our…

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Telling Personal Stories

Hearing others’ stories and telling one’s own is a powerful way for children to connect spiritually. Personal…

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Spiritual Connectedness

One of my favorite preschool parenting moments was watching my children chase fireflies around our backyard on a summer…

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Letting Go of the ‘Main Point’

It’s often the first thing a teacher or group facilitator looks for in a lesson plan: a line near the top that…

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Collective Spiritual Conversations

Often our interactions with children center around questions like “What did you learn? Or “How did that happen?”…

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Infant Stress & Spirituality

Throughout the pandemic, news reports and magazine articles have encouraged us to think deeply about developing mental…

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Managing Big Emotions with Mindfulness

When my children were little and dealing with sibling arguments, I taught them a quick mindfulness practice to help…

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Using Virtual Rooms to Strengthen Community

Over the past year, teachers, therapists, librarians, and others have created virtual rooms with bitmoji to engage…

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Spiritually Rich Virtual Interactions

As we slowly move back to regular in-person contact, part of a new normal will likely include virtual presence for many…

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Unbundled Spirituality

Once upon a time, families turned almost exclusively to religious congregations to meet their spiritual needs. They…

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Young Children and Connectedness

The other day, my tween son and I were talking and laughing as we sorted through piles of nursery artwork I have stored…

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