The New York Times has a video feature about how a French children’s newspaper responded to kids’ questions about the recent Paris attacks by explaining terrorism to children. You should watch this if you are a parent:
This is something we deal with more and more here in Israel. Terrorism has become an almost daily occurrence here in recent weeks and months and kids are increasingly aware that there is something going on. There are different ways to respond to kids’ questions and I think this is probably a better one.
“I feel, in a way, like I am destroying the childhood of my children by exposing them to …
“Yeah, but they don’t live on planet Mars …”
Our kids have asked about the terrorist attacks here and we explain it to them as best we can without vilifying all Palestinians (in the context of the attacks in Israel) but, at the same time, they need some understanding of the underlying politics, animosity and dynamics between Israelis (specifically Jews) and radical Palestinians.
It is not easy and I wish we didn’t have to have these conversations with our kids but this is the world we now live in. The world has changed and there is no “Undo”.