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Nurturing a Kinder, Gentler Child With Empathy

Sometimes, very young children can be highly attuned to the emotional state of others—crying when they see a parent or sibling cry, for example. Other times, they can appear insensitive, ignoring a child’s cries or pointing out differences that make adults wince. The ability to relate to how others feel, or empathy, is learned in different ways throughout a person’s life and while not always readily apparent in babies or toddlers, it is an important skill to learn that contributes to success in school and beyond.

Empathy is closely linked to social and emotional development, and researchers agree that people who show strong empathy for others tend to have better social interactions, and do better in school and at work. This kind of prosocial behavior—behavior that benefits others—is an asset in building relationships and in developing moral behavior. Like other social and emotional skills, empathy is best nurtured in infancy by a parent or caregiver.

Talking about feelings is a great way to start this process. In order to help children develop the positive benefits of empathy—without becoming emotionally distressed by the pain of others—parents and caregivers can use every day moments to teach these important life skills. For example, if a child observes another fall down, a parent can explain how that child may feel and then model empathic behavior by asking the fallen child if he’s okay or needs help.

Parents can also help their children understand that it feels good to help others in need by being affectionate and responsive to their children’s needs.

 

Resources for Sharing:

  • Find tips here for improving the social and emotional health of children from birth through age three, from the experts at ZERO TO THREE.
  • This article from PBS offers tips for nurturing emotionally secure, confident children—from infancy.

First Teachers Can Be Most Important Teachers

Even if parents don’t see themselves as teachers, they are their children’s first—and often, most!—important teachers. From even before birth, babies learn to recognize the sound of their mother’s voices and learn about their environment. And after birth, babies look to parents to help them make sense of the world around them, from new foods to new experiences. Every book that is read, song that is sung, or story that is told is an opportunity for parents to teach their young children about their environment, boost their vocabulary and build closer bonds.

But parents aren’t the only teachers in a young child’s life. Increasingly, grandparents play the role of primary caregivers to young children and foster their physical, emotional and cognitive development. According to AARP, almost 3 million grandparents in the United States serve as primary caregivers for their grandchildren. These grandparents provide an important way for young children to learn important skills from older adults, as well as family history.

Older siblings also play a very important role in young children’s lives by offering guidance on simple activities or social customs. New research shows that the learning that takes place between younger and older siblings is spontaneous and two-sided—meaning that older siblings often offer instruction to younger siblings without being asked, but younger siblings often ask their older siblings how to do things, too.

While young children can learn from every person they encounter, it is the ones who engage with them on a daily basis—be they parents, grandparents, siblings or preschool teachers—that best inspire a child’s life-long curiosity and love for learning.

 

Resources for Sharing:

  • Tips and information from AARP for grandparents who serve as their grandchildren’s primary caregivers, from important medical records to legal issues.
  • Ideas for fun activities that support early learning, from our friends at ZERO TO THREE.
  • 20 tips for parents from preschool teachers about how to get the most from your toddler.
  • This blog post from Too Small to Fail reveals how one family’s youngest teacher helps his sister learn.

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Kathryn Bigelow’s new short LAST DAYS makes the case for why poaching & terrorism are connected, & why it matters.

Hillary begins the chapter at Cop15 in Copenhagen, December 2009.  She attended with President Obama.

It is now diplomatic lore.  Representatives of the most important nations they wanted to speak with, China, Brazil, India, and South Africa were somehow not to be found.  Concluding that this had to mean a secret meeting among them, Hillary and President Obama set out to find them at the summit venue.  When they did, they essentially broke into the meeting.  To me, this remains one of my favorite moments of their whole administration together.  It happened early.  Hillary does not say whether this affected their relationship in any way, but it gave some of us a ‘mental instagram’ moment that never made it onto Instagram.  The way Hillary tells it, it is a rollicking scene and you wish there had been photos.

We did, thankfully get to see this one.  We have no idea what she was doing, but we all loved this moment.

The upshot was this accord.

Photo Gallery and Text of the Copenhagen Accord

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 The war on climate change began early.

Hillary Clinton on Energy and Climate

 Date: 04/27/2009 Location: Washington, DC Description: Secretary Clinton stands at podium, addressing the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate. State Dept Photo

She selected Todd Stern as Special Envoy for Climate Change and brought him with her on her first official trip to Asia.

Hillary Clinton at U.S.-China Partnership on Clean Energy

Hillary Clinton with Chinese FM Yang Jiechi

The minister and I agreed that, based on the good progress that has already been made, the United States and China will build an important partnership to develop and deploy clean energy technologies designed to speed our transformation to low-carbon economies. These technologies are essential, both to spur sustainable economic growth in our countries, and to contain the increasingly urgent problem of global climate change. Areas for useful cooperation include: renewable energy, the capture and storage of CO2 from coal plants, and energy efficiency in our buildings.

We also agreed that we share a common interest in working to promote a successful agreement that climate change talks be held in Copenhagen in December of 2009. We will hold regular consultations between senior officials in our governments on all elements of this broad collaboration.

In India, they bestowed a lovely flower garland upon her and then told her that nations that long contributed more to the the looming atmospheric disaster should take more responsibility than newly industrialized states with economies dependent on carbon power.

Hillary Clinton on Tour of ITC Green Building in New Delhi

… the challenge is to create a global framework that recognizes the different needs and responsibilities of developed and developing countries alike. And I not only understand, but I agree with the concern of countries like India. The United States and other countries that have been the biggest historic emitters of greenhouse gases should shoulder the biggest burden for cleaning up the environment and reducing our carbon footprint. And certainly President Obama has put our country on the path to doing that.

And no one wants to in any way stall or undermine the economic growth that is necessary to lift millions of more people out of poverty. So, I want to make two points as clearly as I can.

First, the United States does not and will not do anything that would limit India’s economic progress. We believe that economic progress in India is in everyone’s interest, not just India’s. To lift people out of poverty and to give every child born in India a chance to live up to his or her God-given potential is a goal that we share with you. But we also believe that there is a way to eradicate poverty and develop sustainably that will lower significantly the carbon footprint of the energy that is produced and consumed to fuel that growth.

And secondly, we in the United States, under the Obama administration, are recognizing our responsibility and taking action. So, therefore, addressing climate change and achieving economic growth, in our view, are compatible goals. And we know, as we look at the forecast of rising sea levels and changing rainfall and melting glaciers that India is a country very vulnerable to climate change. But it is also a country most likely to benefit from clean energy policies that are key to economic sustainability in the 21st century.

So, that is why I am very confident — and even more so after the discussion we just had, led by the minister — that the United States and India can devise a plan that will dramatically change the way we produce, consume, and conserve energy. And, in the process, start an explosion of new investments and millions of jobs. India already has the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit, the knowledge base to be a big winner if we feed these opportunities of energy efficiency and renewable energy.

In Copenhagen, the larger, newly burgeoning industrial nations were concerned about environmental curbs restricting growth. Small island nations stood to lose habitable coastal land (as did and do inhabitants of coastal areas worldwide – including in the U.S.).   Desert regions were threatened by continued and worsening drought bringing famine and disaster.  All present were there because of concerns about environmental threats and were charged with the important work achieving an accord that would rein in the menace.

We already know how floods, drought, and famine  – which we refer to as ‘natural disasters’  – can devastate regions.  In our own country we now have a ‘fire season’ in the west.   If you are younger than 15 you may have lived with a ‘fire season’ all of your life, but this is a very new ‘season’ even to people still in college.

Hillary was looking beyond the human toll these catastrophes take and toward the lurking political implications as well as their potential exploitation by bad actors.  We do know how bad those actors can be.  When Hillary and Obama both accurately saw the climate issue as a security threat during the primaries, they were both right, and it was an issue they addressed as an ensemble.  We should all be glad for that.

Here is the press conference in Copenhagen she refers to.

Secretary Hillary Clinton’s Remarks at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

Hillary in Copenhagen

It was not perfect and not legally binding, but the agreement that came out of Copenhagen was the first to reflect the softening of the division between developing and developed nations.  It did not achieve everything everyone wanted, but, Hillary points out, that is the nature of compromise.

Secretary Clinton’s Remarks at the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) Ministerial

Secretary Clinton’s Statement On The Cancun Agreements

Video: Secretary Clinton Speaks to Climate and Clean Air Coalition

The Arctic nations were Hillary’s natural allies in the battle to curb climate change.

Hillary Clinton with Norwegian Foreign Minister Stoere in Tromso

 

Hillary Clinton at Climate and Clean Air Coalition Event in Stockholm

Hillary Clinton in Helsinki: The Climate Clean Air Coalition and Green Embassy Event

When she attended the Arctic Council in 2011,  she was the first secretary of state to do so. Senator Lisa Murkowski, a member of the delegation, shared the photo.  We see her standing near Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar on the right of the photo.  Hillary signed the first legally binding agreement among the eight Arctic nations.

Hillary Clinton and Delegation Wheels Up from Greenland

The melting ice was opening new shipping routes, and Russia was quick, under Putin’s direction, to begin staking claims to possible underwater oil sources.  The implications of an “oil rush” in the Arctic have grave military implications.

All of the international action on climate change is geared to culminate in a summit in Paris next year where, perhaps, legally binding agreements can be achieved.  Hillary points out that many, especially small, threatened and fragile nations, look to the U.S. to lead and points out the value and necessity of leading by example.

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Hillary Clinton’s ‘Hard Choices’ Retrospective: Introduction

Access other chapters of this retrospective here >>>>

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Hillary was in south Florida today for a book signing in Coral Gables, a campaign event for Charlie Crist, and a convention of women realtors where she could not resist mentioning the new person in her life.

10-02-14-Y-01

10-02-14-Y-02  10-02-14-Y-03 10-02-14-Y-04 10-02-14-Y-05 10-02-14-Y-06 10-02-14-Y-07 10-02-14-Y-08 10-02-14-Y-0910-02-14-Y-10

TAPS.Org honored Hillary this evening with its Lifetime Service Award. 10-01-14-Y-01

New York Times video >>>>

Thanks to Ruby Cramer for sharing this!

Hillary Clinton Gets Close, Candid With Military Families

The event, honoring the families of fallen veterans, was Clinton’s most intimate, unguarded public appearance since leaving State. “I’m so sorry. I’m so, so sorry.” posted on Oct. 1, 2014, at 9:50 p.m.

Hillary is scheduled to be in Chicago next week stumping for Pat Quinn.  The day of the fundraiser, she will deliver the keynote at the midday AdvaMed plenary session.  Quinn will introduce the morning plenary that day.

Hillary begins this chapter by verifying an incident we had all seen reported that was never confirmed.  It took place on the road between Ramallah and Jerusalem in 2012 and concerned many of us.

She was traveling in the Holy Land just before Thanksgiving.

Video: Hillary Clinton With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

President Obama asked me to come to Israel with a very clear message: America’s commitment to Israel’s security is rock solid and unwavering. That is why we believe it is essential to de-escalate the situation in Gaza.

The rocket attacks from terrorist organizations inside Gaza on Israeli cities and towns must end and a broader calm restored. The goal must be a durable outcome that promotes regional stability and advances the security and legitimate aspirations of Israelis and Palestinians alike.

The incident on the Ramallah road involved a rocket that might have been launched, according to Hillary, and not the attempted ground attack we had read of here.

As she mentioned in chapter 14, the Obama administration came into office on the heels of a cease-fire in the region that more-or-less held through the next two years and began a creeping deterioration through 2011 into 2012.  Events of the Arab Spring influenced Hamas activity in Gaza as related by Hillary and Sinai began to descend into lawlessness as Bedouin tribes, excluded by the Muslim Brotherhood in Cairo,  became restless.

On this first trip to post-revolutionary Egypt,  she raised the issue of Sinai to then President Morsi to no avail.  He perceived no problem.  After all, there was an Islamist government now.  She found his perception naive at best.

Hillary Clinton with Egyptian FM Mohamed Kamel Amr

Hillary Clinton in Egypt: Day Two

Came August –  Henry Kissinger had once warned her as secretary of state never to plan a vacation in August  – this.

Hillary Clinton on Vacation (Sort Of)

With regard to the Secretary’s call with Egyptian Foreign Minister Amr, they obviously talked about the situation in Sinai and the ongoing Egyptian security operations. They talked about the visit of the IMF to Cairo and under the – with Christine Lagarde there as well, and the United States’ ongoing interest in support Egypt’s recovery as well.

In October the Emir of Qatar made an official visit to Gaza.  It was a big deal for Hamas and precipitated a thorny regional situation for all involved at a volatile time.  The Emir, Sheikh Hammad bin Khalifa al-Thani,  assisted by his cousin,  Sheikh Hammad bin Jassim al-Thani,  sought to seize the moment to  peddle Qatari influence and consolidate power in the region.

The power-play was short-lived.  With the overthrow of Morsi and Islamist influence diluted, the two Sheikhs stepped aside in 2013.   In 2014 Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the UAE recalled their ambassadors to Qatar.

Hillary was in Australia with Leon Panetta and Martin Dempsey when a call came through from Ehud Barak that in response to rocket attacks from Gaza, Israel was about to begin an air campaign.

Hillary Clinton With Australian Foreign Minister Robert Carr, Australian Defense Minister Stephen Smith, and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta

 

Hillary was bound for Singapore and then Thailand to meet up with President Obama.  They were to make an historic joint visit to Burma and Cambodia where she  had originally been scheduled to attend ASEAN with President Obama.   It was a critical summit addressing issues about the South China Sea.

But in the Middle East there was a chance of a ground invasion of Gaza.

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton Tour Wat Pho Royal Monastery in Bangkok

SECRETARY HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON: Public Schedule for November 20, 2012

The decision had been made that it was most important that she travel to the Middle East to seek a cease-fire. Hillary and her traveling party headed for Israel.

Breaking: Hillary Clinton Wheels Down Israel

She met with Netanyahu immediately upon landing, but was told she would not be given much time.  If she did not effect an agreement quickly, the plans for a ground invasion would be implemented.

Hillary Clinton’s Day in Pics

Hillary Clinton Strongly Condemns Bus Bombing in Tel Aviv

Hillary Clinton Brokers Egyptian-Sponsored Middle East Cease-Fire

The visit to Abbas was largely a formality to keep him relevant in a situation where he had no real control or muscle to exert since the threat was coming from Hamas.  Hillary wanted to be sure he was kept in the loop.  He appreciated that.

Missing element: trust.  Mubarak was gone and the Israeli’s did not trust the Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt that was negotiating for Hamas.  An Iraeli official told Hillary that this was the hardest choice Bibi had faced as Prime Minister.

She left for Cairo with an Israeli-approved  strategy.  This is what her day looked like.

 

Public Schedule for November 21, 2012

Public Schedule

Washington, DC
November 21, 2012

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
PUBLIC SCHEDULE
WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 21, 2012

SECRETARY HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON

Secretary Clinton is on foreign travel to Jerusalem, Ramallah, and Cairo. Please click here for more information.

8:15 a.m. LOCAL  Secretary Clinton meets with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in Jerusalem.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

9:30 a.m.  LOCAL Secretary Clinton meets with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, in Ramallah.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING MEETING)

11:00 a.m. LOCAL  Secretary Clinton meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in Jerusalem.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING MEETING)

2:40 p.m. LOCAL  Secretary Clinton meets with Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, in Cairo.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING MEETING)

4:10 p.m. LOCAL  Secretary Clinton and Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr deliver joint press statements, in Cairo. Please click here for a transcript of the remarks.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)

Note: Secretary Clinton has no public schedule through Sunday, November 25th.

Morsi was educated in the U.S. and read carefully.  He questioned the translation, and objected to a portion until Hillary pointed out that his it was folks who had proposed that element at which point he let it slide.  He and the Muslim Brotherhood were new to leadership despite having something of a history,  and Hillary had to remind them of their position of leadership in the region.  The moment of the announcement would represent the apex of their authority.

Video: Hillary Clinton Announces Mid-East Cease-Fire

November 21, 2012 by still4hill

Hillary Clinton and the Gaza Cease-Fire

In the end a senior Israeli official told Hillary that they had been forty-eight hours from launching a ground offensive and that her intervention was the only thing standing in the way.

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Hillary Clinton’s ‘Hard Choices’ Retrospective: Introduction

Access other chapters of this retrospective here >>>>

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