AIM Encourages Communication

The ability to communicate is critical to a child’s social, emotional, and character development. Being able to communicate allows children to engage in everyday occurrences such as building relationships, reflecting on their own feelings and the feelings of others, and resolving conflicts.

Research studies show the need to empower children with these skills and attitudes if we want them to succeed in school, in the community, and in the workplace. For example, as highlighted here in the 2015 study conducted by Child Trends/ISAID Office of Education, “There are five critical skills most likely to increase odds of succBigLittleBuddies_1ess across all outcomes and which employers expect employees to have: social skills; communication; and higher-order thinking skills (including problem solving, critical thinking, and decision-making); supported by the intrapersonal skills of self-control and positive self-concept.”

Since the first episode twenty years ago, the producers of the animated television series ARTHUR, have understood the power of communication for children. Each week, millions of kids watch Arthur and his friends utilize the power of communication while navigating their way through the ups and downs of childhood.

  • Watch how Arthur’s ability to communicate with his friend Sue Ellen allows him to resolve a conflict and continue their friendship in this clip from the episode “So Funny I Forgot To Laugh”.

The AIM Buddy Project, continues ARTHUR’s commitment to emphasizing the power of communication. By giving students multiple opportunities to participate in discussions in whole group sessions and one-on-one mentor/mentee interactive sessions, they can begin to feel comfortable talking about difficult topics, characters’ feelings, different perspectives, actions and consequences.

Sample question embedded in the "Buster's Growing Grudge" interactive comic.

Pause point questions are embedded all through out the interactive features, like this one from “Buster’s Growing Grudge” interactive comic.

By opening up these opportunities for discussion around difficult topics, students can begin to develop language and skills they need to communicate their own feelings, perspectives, and actions as they navigate through the ups and downs of their own lives.

Watch how the AIM Buddy Projects helps open these opportunities as big buddy and little buddy pair discuss the topic of forgiveness.

Reference: 

Workforce Connections: Key “Soft Skills” That Foster Youth Workforce success: Towards a Consensus Across Fields. Lippman, L.H., Ryberg, R, Carney, R, Moore, K.A. (2015) Child Trends Child Trends Publication #2015-24, child Trends, Inc. Prepared by child Trends Through the FHI 360-managed Work force Connections Project.

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