To Love Tenderly: Teaching Compassion and Justice Through Stories and Activities for Ages Five Through Nine

For grades K-4

This book contains 32 short, absorbing stories about children and families from many different countries and cultures: from Tanzania, El Salvador, the United States, Croatia, Sweden, China and more. Some are based on real-life situations, others on folk tales. But they all introduce children to the realities of poverty, injustice, and abuse of natural resources, to help them develop a strong sense of identification with children all over the world.

These stories are grouped according to age levels (kindergarten and first grade, and second to fourth grade). They can be read aloud or acted out by the children with simple puppets.

Several scripts for plays help children put themselves into situations of other children throughout the world whose lives are different from their own.

In addition, there is information on how to involve children in two social justice projects: learning about hunger and learning about child labor.


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Excert from the book:

From The Big TV: A Story from Mali of a boy named Mamadou, for kindergarten and first grade:

Mama stopped her work to enjoy a cup of water. Another mother said, “I just heard at the well that tonight the people with the big TV are coming to town.”

Not one house in town had a television set. Mamadou knew that once in a while a truck drove into their village. It had a large television on the back. Most of the townspeople would go to watch shows. He loved the moving pictures of people who lived far away. As he sipped his water slowly, he remembered the time he fell sound asleep on the ground while he was watching the television! His big brother had to carry him home…


*** For kid friendly definitions of Catholic Social Teachings click here.