Accidental Hurtful Words

We started a new theme! It’s called אוֹנָאַת דְבָרִים (Ona’at Devarim–Hurting with words).

Sometimes people (kids and grown-ups, too!) say things that hurt other people’s feelings without meaning to. Hurtful words can happen by accident. Sometimes, nice people can say hurtful words.

Today, Nitzanim children imagined examples of times that words could hurt feelings by accident.

1. Sometimes our feelings get hurt when one of our friends tries to be funny and we don’t think what they’re saying is funny.

“Don’t let (name) drive the bus.”

“That hurt my feelings [when you used my name in the name of the book we’re talking about (Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!)]”

“I’m sorry. I was just trying to be silly.”


2. Sometimes one of our friends says what he or she thinks and doesn’t know that they’re saying something hurtful–it’s the truth!


“Look at my picture. It’s a kitty.”

“That doesn’t look like a kitty. It looks like a kangaroo.”


“I’m sorry for what I said.”

3. Or, sometimes one of our friends might say something hurtful when they’re feeling mad inside.

One child explained that when his friend loses a game that they’re playing together, his friend gets angry about losing and says, “Don’t look at me!” He probably isn’t trying to say mean things. He’s just upset that he lost the game.

We’ve only just started to wonder about אוֹנָאַת דְבָרִים (Ona’at Devarim–Hurting with words). I can’t wait to see how children’s questions and ideas about hurtful words will guide our exploration.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.