Want to be a Roots of Empathy Instructor?
Update! Your response has been overwhelming! Thank you so much. Most of our programs have now started for 2017-18 but if we’re still in need of volunteers in your area someone will be in touch. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee your participation in a particular school or classroom.
Roots of Empathy relies on volunteer Instructors from the community to deliver our program to elementary school children. We offer training and certification and give you all the support you need to help children discover their shared humanity through observation of a baby and parent, and through curriculum activities that develop social and emotional literacy. It is a very rewarding experience – you can see the changes in the students over the year.
If you’re interested in becoming a Roots of Empathy Instructor, just complete this form and we’ll be in touch.
How it works
Roots of Empathy Instructors come from the community and are certified through a Roots of Empathy training program. Instructors deliver all aspects of the Roots of Empathy lessons in the classroom and work closely with the participating volunteer family and the classroom teacher throughout the school year. You visit the same classroom 27 times over the school year, about once a week starting in the fall, and deliver lessons that are 25 – 40 minutes long.
Roots of Empathy Instructors come from diverse professional backgrounds. Many have backgrounds in teaching, health, early childhood education, social work, guidance counseling, speech therapy and recreation. We also have principals, retired school board superintendents, and police officers delivering the program. Having classroom experience is a major asset, as is having knowledge of infant development.
We want our Roots of Empathy Instructors to be:
- professional in the classroom
- respectful of classroom teachers and all people involved, and of their roles and ways of doing things
- respectful of the culture and routine in the classroom and school
- sensitive to the privacy of the home and family culture
- non-judgmental, empathic, and comfortable with babies and children
- able to recognize the potential of Roots of Empathy to empower people
Instructors receive four days of intensive training from certified trainers and complete a written test. Training happens in late summer or early fall. And there is lots of support from Roots of Empathy during the school year – ongoing guidance on best practices by Roots of Empathy Mentors ensures Instructors are qualified, confident and supported.