Monthly Article Archives: January 2020

A Beautiful Day in the NeighborhoodRobert Brooks, Ph.D.

In 2018 my wife Marilyn and I saw the documentary “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” that focused on the life of Fred Rogers, more commonly known as “Mister Rogers.” His television show “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” aired nationally for more than 30 years and was watched by millions of children and their parents. And as the years went by, the children of these children became regular viewers. From one generation to the next, his obvious respect for and love of children never wavered.  “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” examined both Mister Rogers’ personal and professional lives. Interviews with those associated with the production of his television show together with observations offered by his wife and two sons allowed us to learn more about a man who drew upon his own childhood experiences to address such important topics as compassion for oneself and others, death, divorce, racism, and terrorism. He never spoke down to his young audience when dealing with these themes. His words were rooted in empathy, in an exquisite understanding of the world of children, of their thoughts and feelings.  Mister Rogers proved that one could be direct and forthright in discussing challenging subjects with children and yet comforting at

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