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Teach children to love their culture

By Vision Reporter

Added 26th June 2012 03:54 PM

There are several ways children can appreciate where they come from or their cultures. Some of the common ways are to speak to them in their mother tongue or to encourage them to dress as their culture requires.

Teach children to love their culture

There are several ways children can appreciate where they come from or their cultures. Some of the common ways are to speak to them in their mother tongue or to encourage them to dress as their culture requires.

 

By Harriet Birungi
 
There are several ways children can appreciate where they come from or their cultures. Some of the common ways are to speak to them in their mother tongue or to encourage them to dress as their culture requires. 
 
Adyeri Kateeba, a counsellor and marital coach, says it is sad that some parents do not take the time to help their children learn their culture. 
 
Children may spend a lot more time at school, but parents owe it to them to help them appreciate their culture to have a sense of belonging.
 
Teaching them about their culture should supplement what they study at school and help them appreciate diversity, argues Kateeba. If need be, let them participate in things like churning milk to make ghee. 
 
A child, not groomed to appreciate their culture, will embrace what they see on television. 
“A Munyankole bride at the kuhingira (give-away ceremony) will mix outfits with those of other cultures, or move out of the house with her face unveiled. That is not proper and it should not be encouraged; however much TV exposure one gets,” says Winnie Twesigomwe, a mother. 
 
There is no point denying that children today are faced with more diversity than their parents at the same age, but we need to try and teach them, advises Twesigomwe. 
 
The goal should be to teach them the different ways people live, without clouding their judgment and creating bias. 
Schools try to do this through performances like music galas, dances and plays, traditional clothing shows, but that should not be all, says Kateeba. There should be more time to read, share particular skills and experiences, prepare dishes from different tribes, explain why the dressing from other cultures differs and what constitutes a particular way of life, for the child to appreciate. 
 
Make an effort to get to know your neighbours. Encourage your child to make friends with other children. Ask them about the other children in their class. The best way to teach your child about cultural diversity is to let them see you accept and tolerate others. Our children emulate us, they act the way they do because of what they see their parents do. If you are open to other people, and make an effort to learn more about the different cultures, your child will eagerly want to do the same. 
 
Why cultural values
-It eliminates stereotypes among children. 
-Boosts self-esteem; when children grow up knowing their values, they are proud of who they are. 
-Helps them appreciate the diversity of cultures, making then tolerant, understanding and open to everyone regardless of their culture.

Teach children to love their culture

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