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A Letter from BrainPOP’s CEO: Teachable Moments for the Ages
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In the past year, Americans have grappled with historic events and lessons that will persist well beyond our lifetimes: a global pandemic, racial justice protests, an emotionally charged presidential election process, and most recently, an incursion on the United States Capitol. We watched in horror as a mob that included extremists and hate groups descended upon and desecrated the Capitol Building in an attempt to derail our democratic processes.
In the words of Senate Chaplain Barry C. Black, “These tragedies have reminded us that words matter, and that the power of life and death is in the tongue. We have been warned that eternal vigilance continues to be freedom’s price.”
Young Americans are witnessing a barrage of jarring news reports and imagery that leaves them with many questions, concerns, and fears. How do we even begin to address it all with our kids as we struggle with it ourselves?
Educators, parents, and caregivers, you play the most essential role in inspiring kids to carve out positive paths forward. You can empower them by seizing this moment to talk about what it means to be aware, engaged, and invested citizens who respect each other and our democratic values. They are relying on you to help them work through intense feelings. This is no easy task, but we are here to support you through these difficult conversations and teachable moments.
Throughout January, we are offering a selection of relevant BrainPOP resources for free:
For younger kids (grades K–3), BrainPOP Jr. has topics explaining the Branches of Government, the President, Rights and Responsibilities, and Facts and Opinions. We also have topics to help kids manage their feelings, including Anger, Mindfulness, Conflict Resolution, Emotions, and Empathy.
For older kids (grades 3–8+), our U.S. Government topics on BrainPOP provide helpful background and context covering Democracy, the U.S. Constitution, Voting, Presidential Election, and the Branches of Government. To help kids deal with their emotions, try Mindfulness, Stress, and Conflict Resolution. Encourage kids to become discerning consumers of news and information with our Digital Citizenship collection, which includes topics like Media Literacy, Online Sources, and Social Media.
As we begin a new week, I hope we will all reckon with and internalize the many lessons of recent days and months. If we do, I believe we have the power to move forward as a more empathetic and unified populace.
In grateful partnership,