The holidays provide a wonderful opportunity for parents to celebrate and teach children about diversity. Since your child's classmates may have different customs than those you and your children practice, it allows you to talk about traditions and culture. Your child can ask questions about the celebrations of others, as well as their own holiday traditions. From what meals are served at the holiday table to gift giving practices, celebrate diversity with your child during the holidays to provide them with a deeper appreciation for all practices and beliefs. This is the perfect time to reassert that difference is not only OK but beautiful!
Below are 5 ideas for teaching you child about diversity this holiday season:
1.) Create a holiday dish from a culture other than your own.
2.) Read a story to your child surrounding the celebrations of many different holidays. You can find many books on the LPK marketplace highlighting different cultures such as "Filipino Celebrations: A Treasury of Feasts and Festivals".
3.) Take part in holiday library and school activities that go beyond what you celebrate. Go to a Santa meet and greet but also a children's movie on the story of Hanukkah.
4.) Volunteer with your child in a community that will allow them to observe a new culture. Not only will they get the opportunity to experience a new culture but they will also gain a great sense of empathy and accomplishment through giving their time.
5.) Organize a holiday party with guests who celebrate different traditions. Ask everyone to bring something that is central to their celebration and use these items as conversation starters. You can also ask everyone to bring a favorite holiday dish!
Use these 5 examples as a starting point for using the holidays as a teaching opportunity for diversity. The magic of the holiday season will get you both excited about the multitude of cultures and traditions even within a holiday you might share with someone! We would love to update this post with some of your traditions, please post some of your customs on our Facebook page or send us a Tweet!
Note: We are getting down to the wire with our crowdfunding campaign and need your support! Please contribute here if you believe diversity and the way children view themselves is important.