It's easy to feel hopeless given the grim news reports and the general state of our world. There is so much going on that is beyond our control. But with gifted children, or extra sensitive children (or both - these often go hand-in-hand), the need for social justice, combined with the seeming inability to do anything about it, can create a lot of anxiety or even existential sadness.
One strategy is to help your children identify what she can control, versus what she cannot. An example given in an article on the Davidson Institute website is this - your child may be intensely worried about global warming, but feels there is nothing to be done. They can't control that, obviously, but they can help devise better ways their family can reduce waste or recycle.
Two recent things our amazing children have done:
Together they, with the rest of the lower elementary school team, brought in 39 snuggly pairs of pajamas for low-income families right in our neighborhood. I dropped them all of to a very grateful person at Community Action Center yesterday. You can read about their programs and good works HERE.
They made bird treats and sold them at our Birdie Bake Sale, and donated all proceeds to the Leslie Science and Nature Center. This week, we received a lovely letter of thanks, plus pictures of the exact birds we sponsored, as well as certificates. You can see these items displayed right outside our classroom door.
And these are just two examples - all year we've been doing good things to raise awareness about our environment, learning about ways to make a difference, and doing what we can in very concrete ways. Earlier, you remember, we used the whole month of October to raise money for the Read to Feed program, which supplied animals in our name to families who do not have enough to survive. In the future, we will try to get 100 cans of food to donate by the 100th day of school - these will go right to a local food bank.
We're making a difference right here at this little school, and beyond to our neighborhood, our city, and even globally. We may not be able to solve all the world's problems, but we can do a little tiny thing to make the world a little tiny bit better.