Beyond Our Neighbors: A Curriculum for Expanding Empathy and Compassion to “Others”

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Created by DGT™ and Making Caring Common, a project at the Harvard Graduate School of Education

Caring and compassion are vital, teachable skills with the power to promote tolerance and inclusiveness in our schools, communities, and neighborhoods. This fun, three-part series has been designed to inspire and empower children to be ambassadors for good beyond their immediate friends and family.

Each lesson in this three-part series explores a key question:

  • Who is in your Circle of Concern?

  • How can kindness make a difference?

  • How can we make peace and solve problems in our Circle of Concern?

These lessons includes everything you need to teach empathy and compassion.

  • Discussion guides for meaningful reflection

  • Group activities designed to inspire kindness or a simple act of service

  • Take home activities to inspire kids to lead a related project with their families.


Doing Good Together™ has been engaging children, families, and community groups in big-hearted, service-minded learning for nearly 15 years.

Doing Good Together™ has been engaging children, families, and community groups in big-hearted, service-minded learning for nearly 15 years.

The conversations, assigned books, on-the-spot activities, and take-home projects described here will enable young participants to:

  • Identify concrete ways to empathize and reach out beyond their immediate social circle.

  • Recognize the interconnected and richly diverse nature of “community.”

  • Identify groups or individuals likely to experience social isolation or bullying.

  • Develop an understanding of the value and impact of kindness and compassion in everyday interactions—including with those who they see as “different.”

  • Identify common social conflicts and reliable ways to diffuse them.

  • Encourage families to spend time together and do kind things for others.


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Stories are the gateway to understanding big topics, and we offer picture book lists for young readers, along with chapter books for tweens.

Disclaimer: Doing Good Together™ is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. The recommendations we offer are based solely on our mission to empower parents to raise children who care and contribute.