Parenting tips: 5 tips for raising bicultural children
Are you raising a bicultural child? Here are the top five tips to keep in mind while raising bicultural children.
Bicultural means having or combining the cultural attitudes and customs of two nations, peoples or ethnic groups. You can be bilingual without being bicultural, or be bicultural without being bilingual, but they often go hand-in-hand. When we offer children two or more cultures, we can also be mindful about exposing them to music, food, stories, and traditions from each culture. This helps children develop a strong sense of confidence, security and pride in their multiple cultural and linguistic identities. Growing up bicultural can be isolating and confusing, but it doesn't have to be. It can be an enriching and empowering experience to identify with two or more cultures simultaneously. (Also read: Ways of teaching children about culture through art )
Author and Parenting Expert and Founder of Momology, Fatin Kadri, shared tips for raising bicultural children in her Instagram post.
1. Value your culture
The first step to raising bilingual children is to make a conscious decision to invest the time and energy to keep your beliefs, traditions and language alive in your family. Recognizing the value of your culture and your language is the first step.
2. Speak the native language at home
Exposure is the key. Talk to your children in the language. If you don’t know how to speak the language yourself, recruit the grandparents. Make it a priority to expose them to language. They will be able to better express themselves in their native language.
3. Talk about your roots
Teach your children about their history, their ancestors, traditions and culture at the same time that you encourage them to be proud of their culture, this will help them accept their cultural differences more easily. Let them know that they are not alone and most people come from other countries and cultures, just like them. We are all different, we all have different roots and beliefs but at the same time, we all share things in common. Teach your children about your values at the same time that you let them know that we are not all the same and other people may have different values and customs, and that is ok.
4. Make trips to your native country
Make sure your children visit their native country and understand and see their culture. This will expand a kid's world, making them more empathetic toward cultural differences and helping them adapt to changing situations. They will also become more understanding of other cultures and backgrounds.
5. Find songs/books/that explore the culture
A child is never too young to learn about cultural diversity. Seek out books that highlight cultural diversity. Tell them stories with themes that promote diversity, equity, inclusion and justice. This will help them build empathy, understanding and cultural awareness.