Still haven't figured out how to talk to your kids about the Hurricane Sandy disaster? Some kids from New Orleans just made the conversation a whole lot easier. Fourth graders who lived through Hurricane Katrina have crafted letters for the Sandy survivors, and they're everything you'd expect out of a group of children.
They're sweet. They're kind. They're simple and simply heart wrenching. And they are a perfect road map for parents trying to make sense of this whole mess. Take a look:
And then there's this one, which seems to make reference to Katrina itself:
Simple. Sweet. Amazing!
This is what we need to talk to our kids about in the wake of a disaster. Yes, we can (and should) talk about how to be prepared for an emergency, maybe do a drill in the house, but more than that, these type of disasters give us a chance to teach our kids about simple human kindness. They give us a chance to move past the narcissism that's natural for children and talk about what it means to be in a position to do something for others.
Can you imagine the smile this will put on the faces of people who really need smiles this week?
I live in an area that was hit by Hurricane Sandy, albeit not nearly as badly as New Jersey, New York City, or Long Island. Many in my area have lost power, some still don't have it back. Our schools were shuttered for days on end. But we were all lucky. We had our homes (even if they were on the cold side). We had our lives.
And every time I wanted to complain, I reminded myself of that fact. Not only did I not want to come off as insensitive, but I needed to set the right tone for my daughter.
Kudos to Jonathan McCarty, the fourth grade teacher at Harriet Tubman School on Algiers Point, Louisiana, for striking the right tone with his students. These kids are going to be all right.
Do these letters melt your heart? Will you sit your kids down to write letters to give the Sandy survivors a boost?
Image via SandyKatrina