web analytics

Teaching Our Children About Kindness & The Recent Mass Shootings

With the recent shootings, one being here locally in Portland at the Clackamas Town Center Mall, our oldest daughter is aware like any growing kid. However, it is not usual that we have to hear of a tragic story so close. Just this morning a shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, CT is on the news. The story is still unfolding but it’s all so fresh for us. My daughter asked if they would have a lock out drill today, I told her probably not but that’s why they do prepare for those things. As Kaila hopped out of the car she gave me an extra long hug and two kisses. I told her I loved her with all my heart and I sent her off. Both of us changed.

I also think it’s an important lesson is teaching our children about kindness. Our 7 year old second grader hears what is happening and the most recent shooting is just another reminder that we can’t always protect our children. That there are people in this world who will hurt others so badly. It’s hard for a child to grasp and yet after the shooting in Portland she said she was afraid. The thing is you never know what may happen in this world. You never think it will be your community rocked by terror and tragedy.

The lesson for me as a mother is teaching my daughter about kindness and being aware of the world she is in. It’s an important lesson is talking with my children more and kissing them before I send them off into the world. It’s for cherishing our moments. It’s for being kind to others. It’s for being kind to one another. I want each of my daughters to approach the world with kindness and not fear.

As a father, it is important for me to teach my children to think outside their selves. Put the show on the other foot to speak, there is not point to make some hurt form something that hurts them. Ever since they were little babies, what I always saw was a huge smile when they were happy, and dankness when they hurt. It could be felt emotionally, seen visual nd heard audibly. My point is it is easy to see when someone is happy and sad. So I have helped them develop this since from a young age.

As they grow, they understand what it is like to be happy and sad. And with that realization, it is easy to think about someone else, and to conclude if they are happy or sad. We find it better for everyone when we are all happy. So as they have aged, I teach them to think about how others feel. Since they are kind and happy little girls, they can put their kindness and their actions to make their own choices to be nice to others. And what is nice, is that when others are happy or when we are nice towards others, the chance s that they will be nice to someone else increase, like a cloud that turns gray, eventually it rains!\

So Kindness is important for many reasons. Not only can it make us feel good, but it can do good in other places. When people are angry and mad, they think and do things that can be mean to others.

So does this relate to our kids with these recent shootings, they does. A couple of days ago, all of our local channels were interrupted with the Clackamas shooting, a place where families go, Kaila goes. Kaila was aware. Then today, as we turned on the TV, it was on a news station and Kaila saw this tragedy at a school, that could look like hers. She became aware immediately. Luckily at that time there was nothing about deaths, just 20 children shot” which is scary for her I am sure. She was worried, but she became ok and made sure to give an extra tight hug while leaving, this was around 8:20 am. We want her to understand that she doesn’t have to be worried.

By being kind to people and teaching kindness over using violence to settle disputes and to get through life is much better for the long run, which is a day that many of us can agree on one thing. We do not have the answer for our oldest about this school shooting, but maybe the man was very very angry, which is a no brainer since he caused a lot of hurt. We want our children to be kinder people as they go through their life.


How will you speak with your children about the recent shootings?


  1. Naomi on December 18, 2012 at 10:29 am

    So much to comprehend, even for grownups. Hopefully these tragedies and the smaller ones that go on everyday will provoke some change in the way we deal with gun ownership and mental illness.

  2. Bella T. on December 15, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    You sound like a wonderful mother. “I want each of my daughters to approach the world with kindness and not fear.” I love this quote so much. My heart is being sent to CT this weekend.

  3. joanna garcia on December 15, 2012 at 8:16 am

    so true I agree! kindness can make the world a better place, this event has changed people a lot and hopefully for the better! My prayers goes out to all of them!

  4. shelly peterson on December 15, 2012 at 3:23 am

    It’s great that you as parents talk openly to your daughter about things like this as all parents should. It’s nice to see the sweet loving kindness thats being taught in your family (the world sure could use more of this). Sounds like you guys are doing a very good job at steering your gilrs in the right path to be wonderful people in this sometimes not so wonderful world!

  5. D Schmidt on December 14, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Thank you for mentioning this Kristin.

  6. Christine Wooldridge on December 14, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    So sad, people are crazy!