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Spring Forward But Give Back

There are so many lessons to learn in the spring, including how to give back. (Moral Development and homeschool lesson.)


It Boils Down to This

After spring the earth provides enough food for everyone to enjoy and share.


These tips were written for children between 4-12 years old. However, children younger or older may also benefit from these exercises. We want you to become more knowledgeable and intelligent as you develop your moral compass. With assistance from this lesson, guidance from your parents, and a willingness to learn, you will quickly become more intelligent and wise. Some words and concepts might be challenging to comprehend, so we have emphasized important words and underlined concepts for you to ponder and discuss with your family.

Homeschool Tips: Make sure to write down any unfamiliar words, especially the ones we have highlighted, in your vocabulary book or notepad. Before looking up the definition, try to determine the meaning of those words within the context of the paragraph or sentence they are used in. Then you can consult your lexicon to confirm the definition. Take note of the sentences that are underlined and discuss them with your parents.


Kids' Compass - Giving Back

Spring is a season that holds different meanings for different individuals, and its timing varies depending on your location. In the northern hemisphere, spring occurs between March and May, while in the southern hemisphere, it takes place from September to November. Various creatures on Earth also experience spring in unique ways. For instance, butterflies emerge from their chrysalides, having been trapped during the cold winter months, and gracefully take flight. Bears, hedgehogs, and even bees become more active and comfortable. As the snow melts and the air warms up in colder regions, people also find it easier to move around and explore the world. During this time, we are all free to discover the countless wonders and connect with the diverse array of places and people around us.

Springtime also provides us with an opportunity to better perceive the needs of those around us. It's important to realize that all living creatures have basic needs. We all need nourishment, hydration, and a safe haven from potential dangers. In addition to these fundamental needs, humans also require love and a sense of purpose and belonging. This spring message aims to teach you how you can contribute to fulfilling the needs of both animals and people when it comes to food.

In the following months after spring, farmers can commence the harvest of various winter crops such as chives, cabbages, radishes, pea shoots, kale, cilantro, and various herbs. Animals can also find an abundance of food in their natural habitats, resulting in a plentiful supply for all living creatures on Earth. Unfortunately, there are still instances where some individuals, both human and animal, do not have enough food to sustain themselves. Some people may experience food scarcity due to a lack of financial and other resources, while others may mismanage their responsibilities and struggle to buy food as a consequence. Meanwhile, certain wild animals face food shortages due to the destruction of their natural habitats, and domestic animals may be left neglected or abandoned without proper care from the humans they depended on. Regardless of the reasons why people or animals may not have enough food, it is crucial for us to lend a helping hand whenever we can.

By ignoring the fundamental needs of humans and animals in our surroundings, we can unintentionally become desensitized to suffering and even cruel.

No matter how hungry people become, it is never acceptable for anyone to harm or kill others in order to obtain food. Good-hearted individuals possess compassion, but it does not justify engaging in immoral actions solely because they are in a state of distress. The life of a person who has access to enough food should be regarded as equally valuable as the life of a person who does not. Every life holds significance. When malicious individuals inflict suffering upon others, they must be held accountable for their actions, regardless of their abundance or lack of food supply.

But, to ensure your safety along with that of others, it's crucial to recognize that individuals and animals may exhibit dangerous behavior when their fundamental needs are unfulfilled. Although people possess an inner moral guide and should ideally manage their fear and reactions to stress, not everyone exercises self-control.

When the basic needs of living beings are satisfied, they are less prone to react negatively in stressful situations, so here's how you can help others have sufficient food:

  • Pay attention. There may be someone hungry near you. We often assume that everyone with a family or home has food, but that's not always true. Your neighborhood friend could still be lacking enough to eat. If you observe this, it's important to inform your parents first. They can guide you in helping others safely. They may suggest inviting your friend's family over for dinner. Always make sure to have your parent's permission before doing so.

  • Share your lunch. If you go to school, you might see some students or friends who don't have lunch. You can always pack an extra sandwich or snack to share. Always make sure to confirm with your parents and school administrators that it's okay to share, as some kids have food allergies and sensitivities. You may want to share a hypoallergenic lunch.

  • Feed domestic animals. You can help feed home-less domestic animals (such as dogs and cats) with your parents' assistance. Contact a "no kill" animal shelter for additional support. These shelters ensure that rescued animals are taken care of until they find their forever homes, avoiding euthanasia.

  • Feed wild animals. With parental assistance, you can help feed wild animals whose natural habitats may have been destroyed. But avoid regularly feeding a specific wild animal. Habitual feeding can make them reliant on you, even when you're unable to provide food. Additionally, it's not advisable to regularly feed aggressive wild animals. It's beneficial to feed wild animals only when they are starving and unable to find food on their own. Always seek the help of a parent and consider reaching out to wildlife rescue for assistance.

  • Donate canned food or money. You can also donate your allowance or canned food to local food banks or kitchens for the homeless.

  • Vote. Your parents can research your community's efforts to assist in this aspect and vote for leaders and legislation that establish effective, prudent, and secure methods of providing for the hungry.

  • Teach Budgeting. If your parents handle money well, they could teach a budgeting class at the library. This class can teach families in your community to live within their budget and manage money better, allowing them to buy more food for their homes.

Something More to Think About

Animals act based on instincts, and sometimes they may respond aggressively no matter how much we help them. It can be upsetting for children when animals don't appreciate the love and care given. Remember, animals are not humans and cannot perceive the world like we do. They can feel pain, sadness, and remember experiences, but even seemingly kind animals can be scary. We must respect wild animals' habitats - they are not toys but creatures meant to be free. People, however, should think and act better than animals.

Talk to Your Parents

Taking food from others by causing harm is not morally correct. However, we should still collaborate to lessen hunger worldwide. Do you have an obligation to fix all global issues? If not, what duties might you possess?

Moral Lessons from Jewish Teachings for Non-Jewish Kids: Understanding the Importance of Grains

The Torah's mention of "grain" doesn't always mean wheat or similar plants. Sometimes it refers to wheat-like plants, while other times it describes food that grows from the ground, but not fruit from trees. The Torah states that spring is a time when the world is judged for grain.

At four times of the year the world is judged: On Passover judgment is passed concerning grain; on Shavuot concerning fruits that grow on a tree; on Rosh HaShana, all creatures pass before Him like sheep [benei maron], as it is stated: “He Who fashions their hearts alike, Who considers all their deeds” (Psalms 33:15); and on the festival of Sukkot they are judged concerning water, i.e., the rainfall of the coming year. ~ Mishna Rosh Hashanah 1:2

In the spring Jewish kids celebrate Passover, while non-Jewish kids can aid in feeding hungry people and animals. Enjoy Spring!

TMC is not an organized religion or religious institution. If you are looking for a discussion group please use the button above to join and get connected. We welcome various discussions on morality.

TMC employs widely accepted academic sources and abstract reasoning to delve into the topic of moral behavior, considering observable and measurable data. We also incorporate traditional Jewish knowledge on moral conduct due to its extensive wealth of philosophical wisdom, as symbolized in our logo.

Our ultimate objective is to offer guidance for achieving a happier and more fulfilled life through the embrace of moral living, irrespective of whether one is already familiar with it or just discovering it. Live morally.


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