If you live in a town or city where you have opportunities to experience cultures from other parts of the world take the time to introduce your child to different foods, clothing, and languages. This helps to build a rich and varied canvas of their world.
Take your child to festivals and celebrations and let them know they may meet some people who grew up in a different part of the world, they’ll hear different languages and music, smell and taste different foods, and people may be wearing different clothes. Create curiosity and interest around exploring what they’re seeing and hearing. Encourage your child to ask questions and to embrace the differences. Tasting the food can be a challenge as flavours can be very different. Don’t force your child to taste food or take part in any events if they’re not ready, sometimes just observing is enough. It’s supposed to be fun.
Visit a grocery store with a variety of produce from around the world. Buy a fruit or vegetable your child has never tried before. Find out what the food is called in its country of origin. Cook recipes from different parts of the world.
Teach your child how to explore the differences of others. If they meet someone new encourage them to ask questions in a polite way, ‘Where does your family come from?’ ‘How do I pronounce your name?’
Encourage your child to be curious and interested in the new things that come into their life. When they hear people conversing in a different language get them to listen for familiar words or sounds.
Choose toys, games, and books from different cultures and countries. Help them to build a sense of how people live and play in other parts of the world.
Being culturally aware your child will have a stronger sense of self and belonging, with an understanding and acceptance of others.