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  • 23 people are interested

Seattle classrooms need Roots of Empathy Instructors!

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ORGANIZATION: Roots of Empathy

  • 23 people are interested

The primary way that people volunteer with Roots of Empathy is to train as a Roots of Empathy Instructor. It is an incredibly rewarding experience - often, you can see the changes in the students over the course of the year. Although we’re unsure at the moment of the exact timeframe of our training and program start-up dates for the 2023-2024 school year, I am currently looking for people who might like to become new Instructors this fall.

Here is a quick overview of the application process/role of the Instructor:

  • Applicants complete an online application and interview process (this will occur during the spring/summer of 2023)
  • In the fall, approved applicants attend 3 consecutive days of training to prepare them for their role in the classroom.
  • One additional day of training is required midway through the school year
  • Instructors lead 27 lessons in their assigned classroom over the school year (about one lesson per week)
  • Preparation for each lesson can take up to 45 minutes to an hour (especially true for a first-year instructor)
  • Because of the significant investment made in training new instructors, we ask that volunteers be willing to participate for a minimum of two school years
After the first year of instructing Roots of Empathy and becoming certified in the curriculum, Roots of Empathy Instructors have the opportunity to attend professional development workshops annually. These are typically 2-3 hours and cover a wide range of topics that support our work in the classroom, such as emotional literacy, temperament, and neuroscience.

More opportunities with Roots of Empathy

No additional volunteer opportunities at this time.

About Roots of Empathy


9510 7th Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98117, US

Mission Statement

Roots of Empathy's mission is to build caring, peaceful, and civil societies through the development of empathy in children and adults. The focus of Roots of Empathy in the long term is to build capacity of the next generation for responsible citizenship and responsive parenting. In the short term, Roots of Empathy focuses on raising levels of empathy, resulting in more respectful and caring relationships and reduced levels of bullying and aggression. Part of our success is the universal nature of the program; all students are positively engaged instead of targeting bullies or aggressive children.


Roots of Empathy is an evidence-based classroom program that has shown significant effect in reducing levels of aggression among schoolchildren by raising social/emotional competence and increasing empathy. The program reaches elementary children from Kindergarten to Grade 8.

At the heart of the program are a neighborhood infant and parent who visit the classroom every three weeks over the school year. A trained Instructor coaches students to observe the baby's development and to label the baby's feelings. In this experiential learning, the baby is the "Teacher" and a lever, which the instructor uses to help children identify and reflect on their own feelings and the feelings of others. This "emotional literacy" taught in the program lays the foundation for more safe and caring classrooms, where children are the "Changers". They are more competent in understanding their own feelings and the feelings of others (empathy) and are therefore less likely to physically, psychologically and emotionally hurt each other through bullying and other cruelties.

In the ROE program children learn how to challenge cruelty and injustice. Messages of social inclusion and activities that are consensus building contribute to a culture of caring that changes the tone of the classroom. The Instructor also visits before and after each family visit to prepare and reinforce teachings using a specialized lesson plan for each visit.


Children & Youth
Education & Literacy
Children & Youth, Community, Education & Literacy


We'll work with your schedule.


Multiple locations Seattle, WA 98117



  • Teaching / Instruction
  • Child Development
  • Relationship Building




  • Background Check
  • Orientation or Training
  • Attend a 3-day training in the fall of 2023 (plus an additional day of training in the spring of 2024) and instruct 27 classroom lessons throughout the school year.

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