|WORLD'S YOUNGEST TEACHERS ARE HONOURED|
Montreal, Quebec, May 3, 2007– Mary Gordon, Founder and President of Roots of Empathy (ROE) is coming to Montreal on Wednesday, May 9th (Westmount Park Elementary, 8:00 am) to honour the babies and parents that have spent the last 10 months in local classrooms helping children develop emotional literacy and empathy for others. This is a rare opportunity to celebrate our youngest teachers and meet Mary Gordon; one of North America's leading social entrepreneurs, a renowned educator and Ashoka Fellow who has been awarded the Order of Canada for her work. Mary Gordon is also the author of a recent Canadian bestseller called, "Roots of Empathy: Changing the World Child by Child."
Roots of Empathy is an evidence-based classroom program that reduces levels of aggression among school children while raising social/emotional competence and increasing empathy. There are currently 23 classrooms involving approximately 575 students in Quebec that are participating in Roots of Empathy programs.
The heart of the ROE program is a neighbourhood infant and parent who visit the classroom with a certified ROE Instructor every three weeks over the school year (the Family Visit). The Instructor coaches the students to observe the baby's development, celebrate milestones, interact with the baby and learn about an infant's needs and unique temperament. The Instructor also visits before and after each Family Visit to prepare and reinforce teachings, using a specialized curriculum that is developmentally appropriate for each of four age ranges (Kindergarten, Grade 1-3, 4-6 and 7-8). With their parents, these babies have been teaching the children in their classes important lessons about expressing feelings, respect, inclusion, the power of a loving bond between parent and child, infant development and safety.
Roots of Empathy is a not-for-profit organization with award winning national and international programs. For a treasure of information on the Roots of Empathy program please check our website at www.rootsofempathy.org
Michael J. Cohen