(Written with Kristen K. Carroll)
First, let's define diversity, equity and inclusion. Here's what the terms mean to me:
We encourage everyone to model inclusion and respect for diversity in your classroom, program, or home and in the community. As we strive for equity, we can begin with a examination of our attitude.
A – Attitude
Are we demonstrating that differences are to be celebrated, that everyone belongs, and that we can meet each child where they are, providing what they need to reach challenging but achievable goals? When we have an attitude of respect for others, we exude that mindset and demonstrate it to our children through our actions and words.
A great way to show children our attitude of honoring diversity and inclusion is through the wonderful world of books!
Here are a just a few suggestions to reinforce kindness, inclusion, and respect for all.
Another way to honor diversity and model inclusion would be to include depictions of or interactions with people of all races, abilities and other social identities throughout your classroom or home environment. Are multicultural dolls and pictures of all types of people easily accessible to your children? Do you provide opportunities for your children to interact with people from all backgrounds and walks of life?
C- Classroom Activities/ Cool Ideas to Try at Home
That leads us to activities to do in the classroom or at home. Here are some ideas for reinforcing kindness, honoring diversity, and encouraging inclusion:
As we implement activities to honor diversity and inclusion, let’s remember to incorporate them year-round. Avoid a “tourist approach,” where children “visit” other cultures only during holidays or special occasions; instead, provide activities that broaden children’s awareness of different ways of doing things.
As we are reminded to honor Black historical figures this month, let’s remember all the ways that we can show our respect for them – and others, in the past and in the present – throughout the entire year.
I'm Diane Goyette, a Child Development Specialist, Trainer, Consultant and Keynote Speaker. I'm excited to share my blog!