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A Manner of Speaking Jan/Feb '93

by Bonnie Neugebauer
January/February 1993
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Article Link: http://www.childcareexchange.com/article/a-manner-of-speaking/5008942/

In the face of empty promises and blowhard inaction, we often sputter that talk is cheap. In reality talk is our greatest resource - it may be our only hope - in overcoming human conflict. As we work to create environments where young children are nurtured to cherish similarities and value differences, the most important thing we can teach children is how to talk to one another. We must instill in them a need to talk, a skill in questioning, and a confidence in the power of talk -we will be equipping them to resolve the issues, broad and narrow, near and far, that cripple us today.

Several recent discussions have traveled to this point - that people can only learn to live and work together if we talk to one another. This is true for children in a classroom, members of a family, Republicans and Democrats, Serbs and Croatians, and diverse cultures of all varieties (ethnic, religious, political, religious, lifestyle). If we rethink the Los Angeles riots, conflicts in Eastern Europe, and recent Senate hearings, it seems that the greatest conflicts erupt when people stop talking. Sides are clearly drawn, communication shuts down, ...

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