Have you ever thought about the color of Band-Aids?
At a recent meeting that I attended, this was brought to my attention and I realized that I never once in my entire life had to think about the color of a Band-Aid matching my skin. Also, I never had to question why my baby dolls didn't look like me - they always did.
After this meeting I went away deep in thought. How can I help my children understand diversity? I'm not talking skin color
alone, but also the diverse cultures, languages, developmental abilities, AND ethnicities that embrace our country. I want my children to understand the Band-Aid concept and the deeper meaning within it.
I have found in my parenting years that books provide a great way to explore tricky topics. It can be hard to bring up certain subjects while at the same time keeping your child's attention. I have found that with books, I can still get my point across and they are entertained!
The great thing about books is that while the words support literacy, build vocabulary, and introduce new ideas; the stories and illustrations within can heighten a child's self esteem about their own cultural background and teach other children to understand and respect the unique diversity that is entwined in our country and across the entire world.
When searching for books that explore diversity, keep an eye out for a few things within the story line by looking at the characters, their roles, relationships, and lifestyles. Are they depicted in a positive light, without stereotypes? Check out the books listed - all great examples!