Multiculturalism in Babies!
This has been a profound year in the fight for racial equality. As more issues come to light, many parents are wondering how to best teach their child multiculturalism and when to start.
At Baby Whisperers, we feel it is never too early to start! Before babies can talk, they already notice different eye colors, hair colors, and skin colors. Infants need to recognize that differences in someone’s appearance and culture are a normal part of life. Multiculturalism is most important during formative years, so the sooner the better! Below are some ways to incorporate multiculturalism with your infant.
Reading is one of the best ways for a young baby to learn something, so of course the same rings true for teaching multiculturalism. Make sure to pick a variety of books representing many people. Chose books with a variety of genders, races, types of foods, relationships, careers, disabilities, religions, and sexual orientations. The more a baby is exposed to different cultures, the more familiar he will be later in life.
It is never too young to have baby friends! Having your baby have play dates with children and families of different cultures will further enforce familiarity with these cultures later in life. If you find yourself having friends and family of similar cultures, try group play dates. Local parks, gyms, play gyms, swimming classes, etc are all good places. Socializing your baby as early as possible is key.
Expose your baby to a variety of experiences that could include other cultures. Traveling is a great way for a baby to see new people and experiences at a young age. Volunteering in your local community, going to different areas of your city or town, eating foods from other cultures, listening to music from other cultures are all ways you can broaden your baby’s view of the world.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to incorporate multiculturalism with your newborns and infants. For older children, we have included resources of communication skills below. If you have any other ideas, please comment them below. Please like, comment, and share!
Jeri Ford, RN, BSN, CPN
Sources for Teaching Multiculturalism in Children: