Clyde Hertzman: Educating the Heart

Clyde Hertzman is one of the leaders in a rich British Columbian field of research that is world-renowned for its cutting-edge research evaluating programs that educate the heart.

Clyde Hertzman at the 2009 Vancouver Peace Summit (Photo by Sonam Zoksang 2009)It was fitting, then, that he would participate in Educating the Heart: Heart-mind Education. While many of the Summit participants were sharing the stage with the Dalai Lama for the very first time, Clyde had taken part in the Vancouver Dialogues with His Holiness in 2006.

At the Vancouver Dialogues, the Dalai Lama gave Clyde and other panel members a challenge to bring compassion into education in B.C. Flash forward to 2009, Clyde was able to share some positive outcomes with His Holiness since his last visit.

“I was able to tell him that we had made BC the first jurisdiction in the world to map the state of social and emotional development across the whole population of kindergarten children, and that we were using this to promote discussion and intervention to improve early social and emotional development,” he says.

(Watch Clyde’s conversation with the Dalai Lama)

Clyde, Director of the Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP) at UBC, devotes much of his work to social and emotional development. For him, seeing the Dalai Lama give his field of work a lift up was a real treat.

“When the Dalai Lama is in town his simple presence creates a unique opportunity to raise the profile of early social-emotional development as a public issue,” he says.  “This is partly because of what he stands for, but also because of how he conducts himself.”

Clyde hopes that in the time between visits from the Dalai Lama that social-emotional learning remains in the forefront of our minds.

“I really hope that the Summit will build the momentum for the Dalai Lama Center, so that its work starts to become much more of a daily presence in our lives.”


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