14/08/2014 16:50 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Schools To Give Bereavement Classes

Schools to give lessons in bereavement and death for three-year-olds

Children as young as three are to be given lessons about death to help prepare them for bereavement.

The Independent reports that thousands of children will be taught about the end of life via a campaign using elephants, with teachers explaining how the animals grieve in a similar way to humans.

The approach will be adopted to help make the subject 'more palatable', with teachers advised to tell their young pupils that when an elephant dies, the rest of the herd exhibit their sadness by gathering around the body, unwilling to leave it.

The lessons will be part of a nationwide campaign aimed at breaking the taboo of talking to children about dying.

The initiative was launched by Child Bereavement UK.

"When children are bereaved so often we hear their experiences aren't handled as well as they might be in schools," chief executive Anne Chalmers said.

"The children we support tell us how often they feel isolated when they've been bereaved. Not only do they find that the teachers don't know how to respond to them, but their peers can find it very difficult as well. So the idea behind the campaign is to raise awareness about how these issues can be talked about in a non-threatening way."

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