THEY START SMALL... a true story
Some children were playing at recess. They ran to tell their teacher they saw some kids kicking a baby bird. They rushed over with her as they pointed out, “It’s right there – they’re still kicking it!” Looking down at the tiny bird with its beautiful yellow feathers, The teacher scolded, “Oh my gosh! I can’t believe you’re doing that. How would you feel if that was you. Would you like it if I kicked you?” “They said, “It’s already dead.” Using it as a teachable moment, she told them, “It’s important to respect life and others, whether living or dead.”
Remembering that children who hurt animals are more likely to grow up to abuse human beings as well, she spoke with the rest of the children when they got back to class, “You kids were really good, but I noticed that some of the others were being disrespectful of life.” One child raised his hand, “Kids were killing bees, digging up worms and chopping them up with sticks, and killing ants.”
One of the girls said, “We should do something – make some signs and tell them not to do that.” “That’s a great idea!”, the teacher responded, “Let’s do it!” With the encouragement of their teacher the whole class worked on signs to stop kids from being mean to animals and be respectful of all life and to raise awareness that cruelty and violence need to be stopped. During the next recess break they created more than a dozen posters, posting them outside the classroom for all to see. On their posters they wrote, “take care of animals” and “don’t hurt them” One boy’s poster even said, “IT’S DESPICABLE!”
Those children were concerned about the feelings of others, and knew instinctively it was wrong. The kids who were doing the kicking had no clue. Why? Had no one told them it was wrong?
Kids need the adults in their lives to tell them. Will you?
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