Although the Giving Tree has long been a popular book about the selflessness and generosity of the kind tree, I have always been a little disturbed by the disastrous lengths that the tree goes to in its giving. In school when we read the book together, I thought our teacher was missing a major point and I remember thinking "wow, I don't want to end up a stump. What are we learning here?"
Writer Austin Bailey from World Ark magazine of Heifer International writes about my concerns and the concerns of others who have been debating Shel Silverstein's book for many years. She talks about the importance of Growing Kindness in our children, though thoughtfully and carefully. We don't want to push them to become giving stumps, or "annoy them into apathy" by a constant barrage of giving talk. In her article Growing Kindness in the latest issue of World Ark, Bailey talks about her own experiences growing kindness in her own young boys and the kindness she sees daily from children around the states giving generously to help others around the world through Heifer International. Take a look and see how she's growing kind children that will continue to bloom and grow for a long time to come.