Today is the day!! The revised 2015 Ontario Health And Physical Education Curriculum (including, of greatest interest to most people, sexual education) has finally been released. Hooray!!! This means that at long last we can actually put aside our speculations and take ACTUAL FACTS AND QUOTATIONS woefully out of context!!
The sky is [not] falling! A comprehensive precis of the 2015 Ontario Health and Physical Education Curriculum – Elementary
Just kidding! We’re all going to act like grown-ups here and assess the facts objectively before jumping to any conclusions. And to help out with that, I’ve taken some time this morning to go over the new curriculum with a fine-tooth comb and provide you with a summary.
In one of my university social work class there was an intense argument about nature versus nurture – Is empathy innate or learned? As I recall, I took the innate side of the argument then but I’ve since changed my tune. I believe that empathy can and should be taught starting at a young age.
The Oxford Dictionary defines empathy as, “the ability to understand and share the feelings of another,” and Wikipedia notes, “One may need to have a certain amount of empathy before being able to experience compassion.” I think of empathy as the ability to recognize how another person feels and compassion as the drive help them feel better. Both empathy and compassion have been important parts of my life and I feel that they are two of the most crucial interpersonal skills I can pass on to my children.
Ben and Carol grin at each other. Carol was my nanny when I was young. She was disabled by a brain aneurysm and is mostly non-verbal, but she can still make her feelings known!