How Our Children Can Support Diverse Cultures
In this season of Thanksgiving, many of us meet with friends and family to celebrate our blessings. When reflecting on our culturally diverse friendships, the GenParenting bloggers have previously published blogs on how we can raise culturally sensitive children by modeling acceptance, sharing interests, participating in interfaith events, and partnering in community services and school activities. We have shared thoughtful experiences of how our children have shared their American culture with children from other countries. And we have celebrated various heritages at diversity events per the calendar of events at www.diversitycentral.com.
Questions for Consideration
As you plan for another Thanksgiving, consider the following questions that you can discuss with your family:
- Consider your family’s experiences with diverse cultures:
- Have you organized playdates and meals with friends from other countries?
- Have you celebrated a special event or shared a cultural holiday together?
- What have you learned from these various activities?
- Have you invited friends from other cultures to your home to share their lives with you?
- Do you create art projects or cook food from other cultures?
- Do your read books and watch shows about other cultures and discuss what you have learned?
- How do you learn about and share various cultures?
- What museums, art exhibits, community fairs, churches, park activities, and school events can you participate in with your children to learn about another culture?
- When considering your upcoming Thanksgiving celebration, how can you share other cultures at the family dinner?
- What can you share about your culture with your family at Thanksgiving?
- What culturally sensitive traditions have you created for your family? (i.e. collecting holiday decorations from various cultures, art, books, and sharing holiday dinners with friends from diverse cultures)
- How does your family promote “equity for all” in your daily activities?
- How do community groups support “equity for all” when sharing various cultural practices?
- What are five primary values you can share with your family about other cultures?
- How should education and community services support “equity for all”?
Building Cultural Sensitivity Awareness
May the peace and joy of sharing various cultures at Thanksgiving time expand your friendships and cultural sensitivity awareness.
Copyright © 2018 by GenParenting
Mary Ann Burke, Ed.D., Digital Education Expert, is a substitute distance learning teacher for Oak Grove School District in San Jose, California and the author of STUDENT-ENGAGED ASSESSMENT: Strategies to Empower All Learners (Rowman & Littlefield: 2020). Dr. Burke creates digital language arts and substitute teaching K – 12 activities for teachers and parents. She is the Cofounder of the Genparenting.com blog. Burke is the former Director II of Categorical & Special Projects for the Santa Clara County Office of Education that supports 31 school districts serving 272,321 students in Santa Clara County. She is also a previous Director – State & Federal Compliance for Oakland Unified School District, the former Director – Grantwriter for the Compton Unified School District, and was the initial VISTA Director for the Community Partnership Coalition in southern California. Much of her work focuses on creating innovative digital trainings and partnership programs for teachers and families to support students’ learning. These programs were featured as a best practice at a National Title I Conference, California’s Title I Conferences, AERA Conferences, an ASCD Conference, the NASSP Conference, and statewide educator conferences.