Roots of Empathy Part II of II

Smoky River Family and Community Support Services – In Focus

Georgia Dubois


In October of 2016 Crystal Marschner, Smoky River FCSS Roots of Empathy facilitator, introduced the program to two classes at Ecole Routhier School. Marie Anne Jones, another Roots of Empathy instructor introduced the program to one class at the Providence school and they will continue to go into the class three times a month for each class until the school year ends in 2017.

The Roots of Empathy baby’s mom will bring her baby into the classroom during the second unit of each of the nine themes and allow the children to observe the babies actions and how she communicates with them.

The nine themes:

MEETING THE BABY – first is a celebration of the baby, which involves an introduction to the program as well as baby.

CRYING – this is to teach the students that babies cry when there is a problem and it is up to us to do the problem solving.

CARING/PLANNING FOR BABY – is used to teach the students the demands and responsibility that comes with having a baby.

EMOTIONS – is critical in the Roots of Empathy program as its focus is on teaching emotional literacy.

SLEEP – we look at the sleep cycles that babies go through and how important sleep is.

SAFETY – we celebrate baby’s milestones but we also look at the safety concerns that come with that.

COMMUNICATING – this teaches the different ways in which babies communicate to us and how we communicate with them.

WHO AM I?– a self reflection for the students on who they are.

GOODBYE AND GOOD WISHES – finally we wrap up the year having a celebration for the baby and all of the milestones it has accomplished throughout the program. The students will also write down wishes they have for the baby and create a special gift for baby.

Are you a proud parent with a new baby? Will your baby be two to four months old in October? You and your baby could be a Roots of Empathy Family!!!

Please check out the Roots of Empathy website at If you are interested in become a Roots of Empathy family, please contact Crystal at (780) 837-2220 or

Making a difference one child at a time.

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