TOUGH TOPICS

When should I talk to my young kids about racism?

When is a good time to begin confronting racism and prejudices with my children? It's really important to me that I start with them early, but can it be possible that it is too early for them to even grasp what I am talking about? Really needing some advice on this.

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Bethany posted December 2

This begins when your kids are little. Teaching your little one respect, boundaries, empathy, and social skills sets the base for friendship and diversity. Introduce your kids to as many different people as possible. Not saying they have to actually interact with strangers, but rather exposing your kids to diverse people and cultures so they know there are different
people and practices which exisit. It is important to use any undesired reaction or occurrance as learning opportunities. If your child says something rude or reacts in an unwanted way redirect with something like ""actually Billy, this is ___"" ""this is another way _______ some people ____."" The more you educate your kids the better they off as they get older. Make them aware of ways other people, who are also barely
learning about others, may see things, think , or react. Encourage your kids to teach others about themselves if they are ever misunderstood. Practice empathy, optimism, and Mindfulness on a noraml basis so your kids have something to fall back on if and when they are ever faced with a challenging racial or otherwise offensive situation. Preparing your kids on both ends gives them a better picture of the issue as a whole and allows for a better plan of action when faced with this.
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Heather posted December 2

Socializing your kids is the best way to begin teaching them about diversity and friendship. In daycare or preschool your kids will be exposed to kids and families of other social economic and racial backgrounds. Encourage friendship, sharing, and set up play dates when you can! We go to free cultural museums when they have free days and read
culturally diverse books when they are featured at the library. Usually during certain months some cultural groups will have religious or ethnic traditions and celebratory days, during these special days or months you can usually find lots of activities focused at educating the public on culture. Eventhough they can seem boring to us adults, take your kids to
museums exhibits or public celebrations, let them explore and ask questions. This will help them learn and teach them there is a large diverse world out there. LA has a great African American Museum we recently visitied and highly suggest!
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