We Get Along
Spanish: Juntos (HUN-tos)
American Sign Language: Curl fingers into fists, holding thumbs in the air. Touch fingers together and move in a circle in front of your body.
When you open a box of crayons you see a lot of items inside that are kind of alike. They’re similar in shape and size, but each crayon is a different color. Use any crayon by itself and it gives you a pretty color. Use them all together, though, and you can create a beautiful piece of art
We’re all different. Different isn’t something to be ashamed of, afraid of or suspicious of. It doesn’t mean better or worse. It simply means, well, different. When you dig down beneath the differences what you soon discover is that each person has things of value to offer to the group. Once you’re able to see past what makes us different, you begin to see ways that what I have to offer complements what you have to offer.
Teaching Acceptance and Why it Matters
In January, the theme of our Character EssentialsSM curriculum was We Get Along. “We focused on ways students can work toward getting along with others in a group,” said Richard Peterson, CFE, Kiddie Academy’s Chief Academic Officer. “The character traits of acceptance and forgiveness are essential for establishing a peaceful community. The character trait of loyalty ensures that there is support. Learning how to work together as a team helps the community to be successful.”
When we work together and accept each person for who they are, our society becomes more peaceful and productive. When children understand that their peers embrace their differences and accept them for who they are, they also benefit personally and academically. Children who experience high levels of peer acceptance in preschool and who have friends entering kindergarten with them make a better adjustment to school.
It’s fun and easy to keep the learning going at home. The following questions can help you prompt a conversation with your child about acceptance and getting along with others.
Conversation Starters to Talk Togetherness With Your Kids:
- Why is it important to be accepting of others?
- Is it okay to be different from everyone else?
- What would it be like if everyone was the same?
- How do you feel when someone keeps his or her promise to you?
- What does it mean to be loyal to a friend?
- Tell me something you like about yourself.
- How can someone be a good team member?
- How does it feel to work with a team?
If you’re looking for some good books about acceptance and working together, here are some recommended by our friends in the Kiddie Academy Education Department:
Boy + Bot, Ame Dyckman
It’s Okay to Be Different, Todd Parr
Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed, Mo Willems
The Crayon Box That Talked, Shane DeRolf
The Peace Book, Todd Parr
Whoever You Are, Mem Fox
 Peer Acceptance and Social Adjustment in Preschool and Kindergarten, Early Childhood Education Journal
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