Enhancement of empathy in children through interventions

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Ms. Amna Murad
Ifra Iftikhar
Mr. Abbas Rashid Butt

Abstract

This is a quasi-experimental study; a four-month intervention-program designed to boost the empathetic attitude in public school students of Pakistan. The empathy towards bullying was assessed in experimental (199) and control (184) groups.  The study had three phases. In the first phase the students  were  engaged in different activities to foster empathy which established that empathetic score of students increased and the score of bullying tendencies decreased after the use of interventions. The activity began with a story, followed by a group discussion, highlighting the different aspects of human feelings, emotions and behaviors, alongside encouraging children to give their feedback. In the second phase 98 students were selected from treated group, boys (N= 53) and girls (N= 45). Six more interventions were applied including  reciting stories, question-answer sessions related to stories, followed by asking about the lessons students learnt from these stories. These conversations ended on  brief lectures of trainers about empathy guided by the researcher during the training of trainers. After completion of this session, in the third phae, for qualitative assessment selected students from treated group were asked to write a story about empathy. The study found that the boys and girls grasped the concept of empathy differently. For boys described empathy as being helpful while girls as a means of getting happiness; but both did not associate empathy with kindness. Also, the boys believed that parents are the first to notice changes in their personality while girls think its their teachers. Moreover, for adopting the attitude of empathy, unlike boys, girls showed more collective rather than personalized  approach.


 

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How to Cite
Murad, A. ., Iftikhar, I., & Butt , A. R. . (2019). Enhancement of empathy in children through interventions . International Journal for Innovation Education and Research, 7(12), 36-55. https://doi.org/10.31686/ijier.vol7.iss12.1938
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