A viral video celebrating kids who don't see difference may be missing a larger point.

In a heartwarming video, pairs of young friends are asked to think on one question: "How are you different from each other?"

In the viral video from the BBC kids network CBeebies, the pairs of children usually have a very clear difference, be it height, race, disability, or gender.

But the elementary-age kids tended to focus on differences that were a bit more ... elementary.


What makes you two different from each other?

These children were asked how they were different from one another. Their responses might just bring a tear to your eye! 💗(via CBeebies)

Posted by

BBC Family & Education News on Sunday, June 18, 2017

Toe size, lettuce appreciation, position on the soccer field, and whether or not their homes had squirrels in the roof were all discussed by the BFFs.

It's a delightful, charming scene, but there's an unspoken message here that needs to be addressed.

Reading through the comments on the post, lots of readers applauded the children for not paying attention to their more obvious differences, like race, gender, or disability. "Why can't adults be like this? Why can't we all be like this?" one viewer wrote.

But that's just it: Children should be raised to recognize and celebrate the fundamental differences between people. And they can only learn that if we openly talk about them.

Image via Cbeebies/Facebook.

Whether their parents talk about it at home or not, kids notice race.

Their parents might assume that by not talking about race or difference, their children will grow up "colorblind" to the challenges of society. Not only is that view misguided and denies people their own identity, but usually the opposite happens. White children as young as 3 or 4 years old in the U.S., Europe, and Canada, already show a preference for other white children. Kids are curious and learning new things about the world around them, so they often draw their own conclusions about how things work. If race isn't talked about at home or at school, those assumptions (sometimes totally incorrect) can go unexamined for years.

Children at Scripps Ranch KinderCare in San Diego. Photo by Robert Benson/Getty Images for Knowledge Universe.

Parents raising children of color usually have these conversations, earlier and more often, simply as a matter of necessity. If we hope to encourage the next generation to be conscious of and thoughtful about difference, then more white families (and educators) need to start having these conversations. The same goes for all families when it comes to disability.

As early as 5 to 8 years old, children are old enough to learn and consider social issues and their implications.

The can understand that people of color and people with disabilities may be underrepresented in the books they read, the characters they watch on TV, or even in their classrooms at school. As parents, grandparents, and trusted adults in children's lives, it's important to model your own friendships with people different from you. Read books with characters of color, different types of families, and characters with disabilities. Don't shy away or shush children talking about differences. Help clarify their thoughts and assumptions.

Our differences make us strong. Our differences make us unique. And our differences make us beautiful.

But these differences in race, religion, ability, class, gender, and more must be acknowledged and celebrated with specificity and respect. (Even if that difference is liking lettuce.)

Image via Cbeebies/Facebook.

Courtesy of Verizon
True

If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

via CNN / Twitter

Eviction seemed imminent for Dasha Kelly, 32, and her three young daughters Sharron, 8; Kia, 6; and Imani, 5, on Monday. The eviction moratorium expired over the weekend and it looked like there was no way for them to avoid becoming homeless.

The former Las Vegas card dealer lost her job due to casino closures during the pandemic and needed $2,000 to cover her back rent. The mother of three couldn't bear the thought of being put out of her apartment with three children in the scorching Nevada desert.

"I had no idea what we were going to do," Kelly said, according to KOAT.

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