Family Values: How to Teach Kids Empathy

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Respond to Your Child's Needs

Empathy - Mom Comforts Child

Early signs of empathy are apparent at birth. Newborns cry when they hear another infant crying, and very young babies imitate and react to the facial expressions of others. Parents are essential to taking the process further. Every time a parent responds lovingly to a baby’s needs, new neural connections are made, which associate good feelings with parental care and form the basis of the ability to love and empathize.

When kids are older, even with teenagers, simply listening to their problems and acknowledging their emotions lets them know they’re loved.

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Family Values Poll
What does empathy mean to you?
Putting yourself in someone else's place
Showing your concern
Doing something to make a sad person feel better
Being emotionally open to other people
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