Sometimes our friends or family members go through something painful that we’ve never been through ourselves. Maybe your sister broke her toe or your friend lost his grandparent. Even though you may not have experienced the same thing, you can imagine yourself in their situation to understand how they’re feeling. When you do that, you have “empathy.”
We can do this for other animals, too! For example, even though we aren’t elephants, we can imagine what it would feel like to be one in the circus—chained by the ankle and forced to do tricks. Or we could think about how we would feel if we were being experimented on in a lab like mice or taken away from our mother like baby calves in the dairy industry.
Empathy is important because it lets us feel what others are feeling, which helps us treat others the way we would want to be treated. Because if we wouldn’t want to be treated a certain way, why would we treat other people or animals that way? So, try to have empathy for everyone, and make sure your actions aren’t harming anyone—no matter what their species is.
You can start right now, by coloring in this coloring sheet and then encouraging your brothers, sisters, cousins, and friends to do the same! Because no one wants to be around a bully, and we should all try a little harder to be nice to everyone. ?
Don’t forget to hang this coloring sheet up for others to see—like on your fridge or bedroom door. That way, whenever someone passes it, they’ll be reminded to have empathy for all, no matter how big or small!