Lesson 29: Understanding and Caring

I have many different feelings, and my feelings change during the course of the

I wake up feeling excited, but then I get irritated because my mother scolds me for
not helping her in the kitchen.

I am disappointed because I didn’t get good marks on a test even though I studied
very hard. I am jealous of my best friend because she has new clothes. I feel hurt
when someone ignores me, or says something mean to me, or makes fun of me.

I feel impatient when I have to wait for a bus in the hot sun.

Sometimes I feel so happy that I sing and dance for no reason. Sometimes I cry
when I see a sad movie, or feel lonely, or think that no one understands me. At
other times, I get so angry that I want to scream.

I go through many emotions all in one day. Sometimes the feelings change very
quickly, without warning.

Our teacher told us that it is very normal to have such feelings. She said it can be
very hard to control our feelings, but there is a way we can manage our emotions.

Our teacher said if you understand that other people have the same feelings just
like you do, you can learn to be patient with them. You can learn to be kind,
caring, compassionate, and understanding with other people. After all, they are just
like you. She said we should treat everyone we meet with respect and kindness.

So now I want to understand how other people feel. I can then support and help
them. I can try to comfort them. Or I can leave them alone if that is what they

When something happens to someone, whether it is good or bad, I can imagine
how I would feel if the same thing happened to me. I can understand how the
person is feeling. When I understand this, I can show the person that I care.
If I’m not sure how someone is feeling, I can ask, “How do you feel?”
Then I can listen to them. Listening shows that I respect the person and that I
want to understand their feelings.

We can learn how someone is feeling by watching how they act. We can
understand their emotions by studying their expressions and their body language.

When someone frowns or scowls, or shouts and yells, we know they are angry or
irritated. If they smile, we know they are happy and relaxed. If they cry, we know
they are sad or upset or troubled.

I can remember when I have felt the same way.
I can imagine how I might feel.
I can ask and listen. I can show I care.
Understanding each other helps us get along.
It feels good to understand and care.

A) Discussion Points
1. Discuss how you can show that you care for another person by focusing on the
words: understand, remember, imagine, ask, listen.
2. Who is the person who understands you the best? Talk about this person.
3. Talk about the person you care for the most.
4. Do you agree that ‘it feels good to understand and care’?
5. What are some ways of being a good listener?
6. Why is it important to be a good listener?

B) Sayings
Read the sayings given below and think about their meaning. Can you think of
incidents in your own life that show the meaning of these sayings? Discuss how
you can follow this advice in your own life every day.

To understand and to be understood makes our happiness on earth. — German
If you want understanding try giving some. — Malcolm Forbes
Peace cannot be achieved through violence; it can only be attained through
understanding. — Ralph Waldo Emerson
Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding. — Mohandas
Karamchand Gandhi

C) Poem
Smiling is Infectious
by Spike Milligan

Smiling is infectious,
you catch it like the flu,
When someone smiled at me today,
I started smiling too.
I passed around the corner
and someone saw my grin.
When he smiled I realized
I’d passed it on to him.
I thought about that smile,
then I realized its worth.
A single smile, just like mine
could travel round the earth.
So, if you feel a smile begin,
don’t leave it undetected.
Let’s start an epidemic quick,
and get the world infected!

Revised July 2020

Audio courtesy Tara Kriplani: