Nurturing Social Awareness in Young Thinkers

Maybe it’s not an accident that Black History Month and Women’s History Month fall side by side. Historically speaking, lots of revolutions, lots of causes, have overlapped. It’s almost as if paying attention to the rights and freedoms of some makes us more aware of those of others, and of our own. “A rising tide lifts all boats”, as they say. It’s always hoped that there will be

Yes, it’s an intense couple of months, especially this year, with so much going on in the world, but it’s also an incredible opportunity to engage children in important discussions. Topics like freedom, power, fairness and equality always of interest to young minds, but they’re even more engaging and relevant when given context like these two very important months. What’s better, the same ideas and questions are likely to come up again and again during other commemorative dates.

To keep the conversation going for the rest of March, and for the rest of they year, here are some big questions to share (although your child may bring them up themself).

  • What are some of the things that all people have in common? When and why do you feel different from others?
  • What does it mean for everyone to be treated equally? Can everyone be different, and still be equal?
  • Who gets to make big decisions? Is there a way to make sure everyone gets to say what they think?
  • If you want to change the way something is done, what’s the best way to make it happen?
  • What is power? Are there different kinds? How do you get power, and should you be allowed to use it?

Children have a surprising amount to say about questions like these, and the conversations you have about them are likely to go on for the rest of their lives. Having them with a big person they trust is likely to give them the confidence to be informed and involved as they get older.