In recent times, we have seen an increased number of hate crimes and bullying incidents by adults throughout the United States and Europe. This unfortunate behavior is trickling down to the children in our communities, causing some to shrink in fear and uncertainty, and emboldening others to bully and abuse their schoolmates.
At Living Wisdom School children are taught how-to-live skills. Along with reading, writing, arithmetic, science and art; children learn how to make friends, expand sympathies and cultivate courage. They learn how to work through disagreements in a way that leaves everyone feeling empowered.
Last week on the soccer field, one of our 1st grade boys received a blow to the face from a ball kicked by another boy. All play stopped as he tumbled to the ground. The children gathered around the boy to make sure he was OK. There were lots of hugs and pats on the back. The boy was alright, but a little indignant. “Why did you kick that ball into my face?” he asked. One of the girls put her arm around him and said, “He wouldn’t do that on purpose – he cares about you!” The hurt boy thought about it for a few seconds, smiled brightly, brushed himself off, and play resumed.
This is just a small example of how the how-to-live skills taught at Living Wisdom School help the children to work through social challenges to a positive outcome. You can learn more about how-to-live skills here.
Through story telling and role playing, the teachers at Living Wisdom School help the children to understand that although others may dress and speak differently than we do, we all have a much in common. Everyone wants to have friends and to be loved. Each of us has feelings, that can sometimes be hurt by mean words and misunderstandings. People everywhere want to have a comfortable home and nourishing food to eat. Everyone values a kind and loving family.
While its important to help our children discover and appreciate the common ground we have with other cultures, we must also teach them to value and respect cultural differences. What a boring world this would be if we were all the same!
There is an underlying oneness that permeates all life. Direct experience of that oneness naturally expands our sympathies to include all that is. Experience of this one reality helps us to work well with others, to experience peace in our lives, and to be even-minded and cheerful when things don’t go our way.
At Living Wisdom School the children learn to experience this oneness through the practice of yoga and meditation, and by exploring the various faith traditions throughout the world. We sing spiritual chants and pray for expanded awareness and healing in our lives, and in the lives of others. This universal approach to spirituality provides an opening for a personal one-on-one relationship between the infinite presence and the individual child. This relationship gives the children a strong sense of purpose and meaning in their lives.
Living Wisdom School offers a safe environment for children of diverse backgrounds to come together to develop academic skills, to explore science and the arts, and to develop a deeper understanding of their relationship with one another and with the world in which we all live.