When you and your partner are of different cultures, raising your kids involves melding those cultures together. It’s the fusion we all need in our homes, multicultural or not, to gel well with society.
Look around and there’s a sea of different faces in an ever-increasing amount. It’s a beautiful thing, something we should make sure our children respect and understand. Whether you’re raising multicultural kids in your own home or simply want to teach your children how to live outside the walls of your home in a multicultural world, it will only benefit your child.
They are more aware of the world around them
Kids living in a multicultural home will gain exposure to the cultures of their own heritage. Even still, there’s a greater world out there than that. For parents of multicultural kids and singular culture families, showing them that the world is a big place full of many cultures helps them to have more compassion. Plus, learning the traditions of other cultures is often fun, especially through food and crafts.
Languages come easier
Children really benefit from learning a secondary language in their home. If each parent speaks a different native language, their children grow up learning it by using the same part of the brain that is engaged as a native language. In other words, they have an easier time of learning. For households that only speak one language, the early years are a great time to introduce children to other languages. It’s a skill that will serve them well into adulthood, one that will never go out of style.
Increased ability to explore with confidence
Children that are taught about our multicultural world aren’t threatened by things that are different. In fact, they’re more willing to try out something new. Food is one of the best ways to bridge that gap. While under a multicultural roof, children are exposed to the cuisines their parents grew up with, those with a singular culture can have family dinner nights where a new cuisine is tried. It’s a fun and creative way to learn something new about another way of life.
Homogenous cultures have a harder time understanding differences. If you visit a place like China where the Han Chinese heritage is most prevalent, anyone that is not of this heritage (white, black, or otherwise non-Asian) stands out. They’re not taught much about the other people around the world. As such, you may become a bit of a celebrity on their turf.
But when we teach our children that society isn’t homogenous, it opens new doors for them. They can easily roll with things that are different from what they grew up with. And they’ll roll right along with open minds, taking these positive influences with them through life.
As your kids grow, they will make friends with children of other cultures too. The world is globalizing, bringing us all closer together. We’re becoming a tapestry of intricately woven threads that bind our cultures with one another. Teach them to have an open mind about it and it will open the doors to their future.