Project Profile

Project Title:
Roots of Empathy
Imagineaction Social Action Projects
School Name:
Andover Elementary
School board / First Nations school jurisdiction:
School District 14
Project Theme:
  • Connect [relationships]
  • Engage [active & participatory citizenship]
  • Thrive [health & wellness]
  • Lead [leadership]
  • Care [poverty]
Grade Level:
Subject Areas:
English, Guidance and Career Education, Health and Physical Education
Burtt's Corner
New Brunswick
Community Partners:
RCMP- Grand Falls/Perth Andover Detachment (Community Coordinator)
Local Roots of Empathy Committee: Robert Knox Public Health Nurse for School District 14
Andover Elementary School, Principal

Roots of Empathy

Roots of Empathy program in School District 14 has been running since September 2004. The purpose of the program is to help students learn about their feelings and emotions and how their actions have an impact on other children in their classroom and community. The program achieves these objectives by having a parent and baby come to the classroom once a month so the students can observe and learn from the interaction between the parent and baby. The Roots instructors lead discussions on the value and importance of the parenting relationship and its impact on a baby’s growth and development. The instructors express that for some of the children it is the first time they have the opportunity to see a positive relationship, and to see how important it is for the mother and father to respond to the baby’s needs so that they baby knows that he/she is loved. The non-verbal cues and emotions of the baby are observed and labeled so that the children can relate them to their own feelings with the final goal being to relate them to the feelings of their peers, and decrease bullying.

Update (October-04-13)

We used the grant to provide our volunteer facilitator with funding for her trip to St. John to receive her training in the Roots of Empathy program. Doris Dickson is a retired, bilingual teacher who offered her help to our school as the six grandchildren she had been caring for were now all in school. We used the money which was left to provide other books for the classroom.