By Susan Ciancio
A 2019 article in the journal Children caught my eye this week. The authors were discussing child development as it relates to immigrant children. In the article, the authors state:
The predicament of the young fetus in the womb of the refugee and asylum-seeking mother subjected to . . . stressors is of grave significance to child development. While history has documented the horrendous assault to humanity during the Holocaust and the Dutch Famine, retrospective studies of individuals who lived through these events during their intra-uterine lives have illustrated extended consequences of these assaults. The surviving fetuses of such experiences have shown to have higher propensity to develop high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity and genetic tagging for trauma-related disorders. A life course approach to child development necessitates awareness of the consequences of traumatic events (e.g., from prolonged periods of displacement and being on the move) and the effects for the developing fetuses of expecting mothers.
Though we don’t need it, this is just further evidence of the fact that a unique human being is created the moment the sperm fertilizes the egg. Development begins at that time.
This is the science of embryology.
As we await the SCOTUS decision, facts like this must become part of our daily parlance. They must become what we teach—to our children, to our friends, and to those in our communities and beyond.
Those who favor abortion never tire of spewing anger and hatred. We must counter that with the love of Christ and the love for both the mom and the baby. One of the best ways to do this begins with children.
At the Culture of Life Studies Program, we have several lessons that teach not only the humanity of the preborn baby but the importance of loving and respecting people from creation until death.
As summer draws near and you look for ways to occupy your children’s time, consider some of the lessons we offer. Your children, especially your older children, will likely hear about and see news clips of whatever SCOTUS decides. They will see the anger that will ensue if Roe v. Wade is overturned and the decision goes back to the states.
We cannot allow those who advocate for abortion to have the final—or loudest—word. That is why this time is crucial in helping children form their moral consciences and in learning the truth about the humanity of the preborn baby.
Little ones will love our four-day downloadable lesson entitled The Developing Baby that teaches pre-K-2nd graders about basic fetal development. At the end of the lesson, children will create a life-sized wall poster of the milestones of human development and/or a fetal development flipbook.
Kids of this age will also love Life Is Precious—a downloadable four-week unit study that uses picture books to teach children about human development.
As children grow, they can learn lessons from saints like St. Teresa of Calcutta and St. Maximilian Kolbe—people who saw the dignity and value in every person and who gave of themselves to serve others.
Middle schoolers can further the knowledge of a preborn baby’s development in our lesson entitled Defend Life: The Beauty of the Developing Human Being. This lesson explores the science of the earliest moments of a person’s life and gives students a firm foundation regarding the fact that every human being’s life must be protected from creation until death.
Older students can learn about Nellie Gray—the woman who began the March for Life. They can also learn about the end of life with our lesson about euthanasia. Entitled Without Mercy: An Introduction to Euthanasia, Assisted Suicide, and Other Threats to the Medically Vulnerable, this four-class supplement provides students with a basic understanding of the Catholic Church’s teachings on euthanasia and gives students the tools they need to defend those teachings against current cultural attitudes and pro-euthanasia arguments.
Whatever you do this summer, make pro-life education a priority. There has never been a better time to teach children about the sanctity of all human beings.
For a limited time, all of CLSP’s printed lessons are on sale! Visit our site at culture-of-life-studies.myshopify.com.