Positive Parenting: Exposing Kids to Diversity
Meaningful cross-group contact (interacting with different kinds of people) is the most effective way to reduce prejudice and foster respect and understanding for human differences. So it's incredibly important to be proactive in creating such opportunities for children. Even in a largely homogeneous environment, children of color and youths of diverse faiths and socioeconomic backgrounds are present.Ideas to consider:
- Find a playground or playgroup in another part of town, where more diversity is present. With older children, think about diversity when enrolling children in extracurricular activities, like sports. Is there a soccer league in your community, for example, that involves a more diverse group of youths and parents?
- Consider student and staff diversity when selecting your child's school or childcare center.
- Locate diversity organizations in your community or state. Many offer free or low-cost programs specifically designed to bring diverse youths together.
- Expand your children's opportunities by expanding your own. Seek out opportunities to expand your circle of friends to include people of different backgrounds. Many of these friends will have children, too.