Ensuring all children feel that they belong is one of the main objectives of the Eden Academy childcare centre in Bardon QLD. Celebrating multicultural festivals in the centre is one way to show children that all celebrations are equal, and everyone’s special days are important.
Aadav was excited to come home and tell his parents about Ramadan and Hanukkah, and his parents Rani and Greg were pleased that the centre celebrated the Hindu festival of Diwali in line with their own beliefs.
Rani had researched centres on the Space childcare directory which made it easy to find a place that acknowledged and appreciated multiple cultural festivals.
Every celebration at Eden Academy provides multiple learning opportunities. Cooking, measuring, painting, decorating, dancing, dress ups and more are all part of celebrating special days. Geography and history also come into play as children point to the country of origin of the festival on the map and learn how it started.
When children learn about festival days from an early age, they become an integral part of their own culture, and not something that is different or strange. Treating every religious festival as worthy of remembrance embraces all cultures equally, instilling the belief that no one feast day is more important than the other. For lesser known festivals, children get the opportunity to be the centre of attention for the day as they explain and show how the celebrations and traditions take place.
If parents are invited, it is a chance for them to spend time in the centre and meet people from different backgrounds.
Broadening knowledge of people
Children tend not to notice differences in people and use their own experiences to draw conclusions about others. Celebrating multicultural festivals teaches children that though everyone may be the same at daycare, beliefs and traditions can be different at their friends’ home to theirs. The discovery that people can be the same in many ways, but different in others is a big step towards a deeper understanding of how the world works.
Celebrating multicultural celebrations gives childcare children the chance to connect and stay involved with their local community. Individuals may be brought into the centre for the day, or the children may go to local celebrations like Chinese New Year. Bringing the community into the centre, or the children to the community keeps them connected with their own surroundings and helps them to feel that they belong, where they live.
Bardon Childcare centres are passionate about supporting families as they build an understanding of their neighbours’ beliefs and traditions. The Australian Early Years Learning Framework states that celebrating how we relate to others around us and who we are is the foundation of building all children’s sense of belonging, and crucial to child development and healthy self esteem. Bringing people together to celebrate special days is always going to be fun, enjoyable and a chance to broaden children’s knowledge of the world and other people.