Ethics For Children, Tweens & Teens

Here, young humans empower their ethical development, create life-long freindships, and stand up with care and courage for a GOOD WORLD in action.

Young and Mighty Activists

 Young Ethical explores ventured out to Sunnyside, queens for the young and mighty March for children’s voices, October 23. 
Miles took leadership in the chanting, leading “when I say young you say Mighty,
Oberon kept the beat on the symbol through the whole March. Eda was among the youngest marchers and have a thrilling time Up high on dad’s shoulders.
 And Marifer Shared a speech with the crowd about her activism to petition for recess as play instead of as TV.
Marifer and Audrey taught the crowd a song in honor of Wangari Maathai

 Peace begins in our hearts
That’s where it comes from, where it starts.
Planted Blake a seed,
Let it grow strong like a tree.

Peace begins in our hearts
That’s where it comes from, where it starts.
Let’s plant the world
As a forest
Of love 

Happy Bones Festival

A great September welcomes ALL

Young Ethical Explorers (YEE)
meets every Sunday at 11, except for major holidays.
Open to all ages — with projects that connect us as brothers and sisters in “the human family” as well as peer dialogues about the ethics of our lives .

COMING OF AGE:  Children in their second decade may be interested in a Coming of Age group beginning in 2019.  If so, parent and youth info & envisioning-session will be scheduled. Please RSVP with interests and questions to  You may visit
 for some information. 

YEE Programming open to all ages 

Color Harmony from Color Chaos

Color Chaos? No, Color Harmony!
Story by children: Gabriel, Katie, Lillian, Marifer, Siddharth, and adults Nildania and Audrey with prompts by Deepali of Writefully Ours
Creative Inspiration: Lynn Rowe Reed’s Color Chaos

Green = Peace
Blue = Effort
Yellow = Hope
Purple = Joy
Red-Violent = Anger to Resolution
Turquoise = Calm
Red = Love
Principal  Mr Greystone

One day, I made an announcement: “I want to be an illustrator!” My mother bought me a big box of crayons. I put them in my backpack and dashed off to school. Just inside the school I met our new substitute principal, Mr Greystone. His No’s went on and on. NO Running, NO Shouting, NO hopping, No Singing! In my classroom Mrs Peters wrote the schedule on the board. I saw that I would have to wait a long time to use my new crayons…after math, reading, testing, lunch, recess, spelling bee and science. 
At lunchtime I smuggled my crayons into the cafeteria. Next to the lunch line was Mr Greystone’s new board. We tried out Marvelous Magenta, Dandelion Yellow, and Periwinkle Blue and 61 other colors. When Mr. Greystone came in, he blew his stack! Art supplies in all colors were collected for disposal, recess was canceled. We got extra spelling words. 
“There will be NO more crayons, NO more markers, NO more colors of any kind!”
Meanwhile, inside the trash can, the colors started talking and bickering.”HOW WILL WE EVER GET OUT OF HERE,” said Black. “ quiet. Let’s stay hopeful as we work together to plan our escape,” said Hopeful Yellow. “Yes, we should be working together, with love, to find a way out of here.” said Red, brimming with Love for the other crayons.
Hard-working Blue had a great idea. “We can make a climbing pile from the stuff in the trash can to climb up. We can pile up crumpled paper, pens and board. It takes a lot of effort to build the trash tower, but it will be easy to climb up and get out of here,” he said.
Peaceful Green was thinking about how all the colors could come together. He said: “Let’s solve this problem by making an invention. Our invention will be a color wheel.”  Red-Violet, helpful as ever in finding solutions, encouraged Green: “Indeed. We could form a color wheel together, spin it and bounce out of the garbage can,” she said. 
Some colors still needed a little nudge, and Joyful Purple came to the rescue. “Let’s sign a joyful song. All our noise of bickering is giving us headaches and grumpy feeling. If we could sing together, children might hear a beautiful sound. They will come forward and discover they are coming from the trash can. Maybe they will sing with us if we are signing a song they know. How about a song about coloring? How about the song: what a wonderful world?”
That got all the crayons moving! Singing ‘what a wonderful world’ together, all the colors found their order by getting in a circle. But there was no jiggle! The color wheel was not moving. Then a big wind came and blew the lid of the garbage can over. Some colors blew up and away along with it. The lid knocked the Principal’s and he began to change his mind.  
A few others were still stuck in the bottom of the can. By then all the crayons that had escaped and the children were singing together! The trapped crayons heard them and got inspired with more ideas. “Let’s draw a hole and then escape through it,” said Calm Turquoise. “Ummm…I am not so sure that will work,” said one of the primary colors. “We can try,” said Yellow. 
“Or…,” began Turquoise, “We can use the pointy pencils to drill a small sign that says: ‘You are all blank without us!’ All the colors agreed. 1, 2, 3…GO! They drilled the sign, made thetrash tower, climbed it and held up the sign. 
The Principal, who was rubbing his head and thinking, turned around and read the sign. As the children and the crayons continued to sing ‘What a wonderful World,’ the Principal said to himself, “My Goodness.”  “Ahh!” he yelled. Then he let the remaining colors out. “Yay,” said the colors, “Now we can recolor the school!”
They covered everything in a colorful jumble. Soon the Principal realized he was not happy without the colors.” Sorry,”he said. 
“Colors Matter,” said everyone together!

Standing up for Education with the Malala Song

We began 2018 by standing up for education.  We learned about child Nobel peace prize Recipient, Malala Yousafzai. We learned about her struggles, and joys and the ways in which she has stood up for equality in education.  

To the tune of twinkle twinkle little star, we are singing this song together.  

Enjoy singing it at home or with your school classes.  We are planning ways to celebrate Malala Day at Ethical -- July 12 will be her 21st birthday.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Malala Yousafzai                    "twinkle twinkle" 
tells the world                       "little star"
Every child                            "how i wonder"
deserves to learn.                  "what you are"

“One child, one teacher,          "up above"     
One book, one pen                 "the world so high"
Can change the world             "like a diamond"         
every day.                             "in the sky."

We the children                     "twinkle twinkle"
of Ethical NYC                       "little star"
Stand with you                      "how i wonder" 
To say we agree.                   "what you are." if you are starting the tune again....

Yes to each child                   "twinkle twinkle"
Yes to each teacher               "little star"
Yes to each book                   "how i wonder"
Yes to each pen.                   "what you are"

Yes to my learning                "up above"
And yes to yours.                  "the world so high"
Yes to his learning                 "like a diamond"
And yes to Hers.                   "in the sky"
No matter the color               "twinkle twinkle"
Of their skin, eyes, or hair.     "little star"
No matter their                     "how i" 
gender-identity                     "wonder" 
Or what they wear.               "what you are." if you are starting the tune again....

Every child                          "twinkle twinkle" 
needs support                      "little star"
to learn and grow                 "how i wonder"
and do their best.                "what you are"

If one girl                              "up above"     
can change the world             "the world so high"
What can a 130-                     "like a diamond"         
million do?                             "in the sky."

Let's help each child                 "twinkle twinkle"
do their personal best.             "little star"
“Education please!”                 "how i wonder"
We must insist.                       "what you are"

Writing as Deed

Ethical NYC has been hosting Deepali Srivastava's "Writefully Ours" program. This has ignited a new dimension of our children's ethical development.  They write as deed! Our group is all ages, so they work at the level of their own ability and understanding.

Older children dive into writing prompts with enthusiastic autonomy, new-writers make enormous progress applying their own ideas to respond to worldly problems, sometimes getting an older writer to scribe for them,  and young-pre-writers draw and "tell" their great ideas for transcription. The group has written letters through Amnesty International to stand up for international environmental activists who have been unjustly silenced through imprisonment; and through CARE to give voices of Hope to Syrian refugees.

In letters to 4 year old Tarek from Syria, who hopes to one day become a doctor, children wrote encouraging notes to cheer him on toward his goals encouraging positivity in the face of challenges. Here is a sample of the range of responses, just our youngest and our eldest.

From Oberon who is also 4 years old like Tarek, came an inspiring poetry "You are the heart and star of love." He added, "I want to be a fire fighter to bring peace.  It's a good idea to be a doctor.  You'll help people. I want your new home to be peaceful.  I want your new room to be blue and gray."

Our wise elder-child Lillian told Tarek:  "Your story summoned empathy right from the bottom of my heart.  I love sad stories, but only when they are fictional.  I feel like my duty to this unforgiving war is to help, encourage and support refugees like yourself.  Earth would be a cruel cold place without our sun.  The history of humanity, and all the humans are the lump of rock that is Earth.  You, and others like you, are the sun.  You are our sun.  You are our sun, and don't you forget that, for even on the darkest of days, the warming rays of the sun may shine through, if it believes in itself.  Good luck in your endeavors."

After she wrote this, she imagined him in his early twenties, remembering her letter as an inspiration for not giving up in his challenging childhood.  And she imagined herself a few years older then him, thinking of him.  

Story Play!

As Young Ethical Explorers, our older students are engaging in a twice-monthly break-out group with Deepali Srivastava, founder of "Writefully Ours."  She offers isvalues-based, poetic and imagistic prompts, to which the students respond.

Recently the children contemplated the Indian philosopher/poet Rabindranath Tagore's
"If you shed tears when you miss the sun, you also miss the stars."

And a small poem by George Cooper:
"Come little leaves, said the wind one day, Come over the meadows with me and play."

The children of diverse ages are welcomed to share their writings with one another and with appreciative parents, witnesses.