In the words of Burt Bacharach and Hal David ‘What the world needs now is love sweet love‘ and from another philosophical piece ‘What do you get when you fall in love; a boy with a pin to burst your bubble.‘
On this Valentine’s Day, if we were to look beyond the commercial aspects of the occasion but consider instead the nature of love itself, we would discover there is no ‘toolkit’ for love, no manual nor guru to show the way. It lies in our experience, our culture, our mindset as much as in the minds and deeds of those we encounter.
Can we teach ‘love’?
If we can teach ‘happiness’, then we can teach ‘love’. Through moral values, through modelling decency and responsibility and through a positive culture, we can hopefully guide our young people towards a path of respectful behaviour. We know that many of our children do not come from an environment where loving relationships are not the same as our own, that they witness and experience things that would cause us concern for their wellbeing.
Ask any primary age child about love and the first reaction will be an attack of the giggles. Dig a little deeper though, and their philosophy is enlightening.
‘Being loved can make you happy.’
‘Sharing love is like having a big bubble inside that never bursts.’
‘Love is one of the things we need to survive: like food, air and water.’
Must we love ourselves first?
We must love ourselves and be kind to ourselves. In our digital and high pressured world, self-doubt can easily erode our confidence, undermine our abilities and prevent us performing as we should. We are all talented, dedicated and resourceful.
Do we need the approval of others, particularly the confidence drainers of social media?
If you are in any doubt, the answer is a resounding ‘NO!!!!’
Who needs our love?
Love is a great theme for assembly. If you are in a values based school, the opportunity to model, promote and share loving values brings appropriate language and considered actions onto the agenda and into discussion. In our experience the use of such language is positive in approaching issues such as bullying and understanding the behaviour of others.
Love isn’t just for Valentine’s Day: it’s for life! Take your time with your special ones today but remember, love is a life skill. If you can genuinely show love it is demonstrated in all your behaviours, in real life and through social media.
Love is a strength, one that we are celebrating through #ForteFebruaryHT.