How is the CoreEmpathy curriculum being created?
CoreEmpathy is being created for teachers by teachers. The curriculum will be launched in phases, beginning with story-based curriculum guides for early elementary grades K-3 and then proceeding with guides for later elementary, middle school and high school. The lessons from each phase will be piloted in schools across the country prior to final publication.
What does Phase I include?
Phase I will include the creation of grade-specific curriculum guides for primary grades K-3. Each guide will include 4-6 CoreEmpathy units, each unit consisting of 3-5 story-based lessons. Phase I also includes the creation of this CoreEmpathy website. Here you eventually will find book lists for all grade levels, links to articles on empathy, research studies supporting our work, links to partners who are also cultivating empathy in the classroom, and an excerpt from a prototype CoreEmpathy Unit for your review.
Reading a common story allows a learning community to explore a virtual world together, creating common ground for the exploration of issues that matter to that particular age group. As a learning community, we meet in the heart of a story.
We meet in the
of a story.
Stories create virtual worlds in which students enter into the viewpoint of characters that may initially seem different than themselves, creating the perfect environment for the practice of empathy. Recent studies show that those who read fiction develop greater empathy than those who do not. An author of literary fiction utilizes specific craft techniques and strategies that draw readers into a character’s thought and feeling processes. These skills, specific to the writing of fiction and also creative nonfiction, engage the reader into an empathetic response. In the CoreEmpathy curriculum, students not only will cultivate empathy through reading, but will also study and practice those same craft techniques and strategies in order to write and communicate effectively, aligning perfectly with the Common Core.