This Practitioner Perspective provides brief definitions to the three main components of empathy (cognitive, affective, and behavioral) and outline the importance of incorporating empathy education into the classroom, specifically looking at the areas of diversity, social skills, and moral development. In addition, the paper provides teachers with discussion questions, prompts, and a “how to” guide to assist students in exploring each character through the eyes of that individual, while also helping to build empathy as they read and discuss the book. The objective of this paper is to help teachers think more deeply about how to use literature to encourage empathy in their own classrooms. By connecting diversity, social skills, and moral development to empathy, middle grades teachers are not just teaching empathy but are also enhancing important life skills for their students and thereby helping to promote productive citizenship for the future.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.
Bouton, B. (2019). “Wonder” Through the Eyes of Empathy: A Middle Grades Teacher’s Guide. Middle Grades Review, 5(2). https://scholarworks.uvm.edu/mgreview/vol5/iss2/5