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Great Falls teachers learn about the "Compassion Project"

Teachers met on Saturday for training at Great Falls College-MSU
Posted at 6:52 PM, Oct 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-05 20:52:33-04

Great Falls teachers are learning how to bring more compassion into the classroom.

Great Falls Public Schools received a grant that will allow the students and teachers to be a part of the Compassion Project.

With the Compassion Project, teachers learn to design, lead, and empower arts-based educational projects that cultivate compassion for others.

Teachers met on Saturday for training at Heritage Hall at Great Falls College-MSU.

Great Falls High School English teacher Mary Dea believes it’s necessary to teach compassion: “It opens up conversations and reflection, just a great opportunity to move in a positive direction.”

The Compassion Project website has more information, including this overview:

It all started when Kayte Kaminski walked into a gallery in La Crosse, Wisconsin filled floor to ceiling with children's artwork. Binder in hand, she, her mother and her sister explored the seemingly endless display by reading statements written by each child about their art piece. Every piece was colorful and unique. Some were funny. Others brought on tears. All of them were about compassion.

In the wake of the 2016 election, our country felt divided. Looking for a way to heal the division and remembering the art exhibit she saw several years before, Kayte Kaminski proposed to lead a similar project in Bozeman, Montana. Dr. Alison Harmon, Dean of the College of Education, Health & Human Development at Montana State University approved the project. In the spring of 2017, The Compassion Project got its start as a pilot program at Montana State University. With Kayte as the Director of the program, The Compassion Project was given a home and an environment where it could properly grow.