Sometimes we get caught in the trap of thinking that if we do not bring attention to something, our kids don’t notice it either. I am realizing more & more that that is not true. Kids are constantly deciphering the world around them, & sometimes the conclusions they come to are not accurate.
Many times these inaccurate conclusions are harmless & humorous, but there are times where the matter could be more serious & important.
For example… Matteo & I were reading a book about road signs, & when we got to the handicap sign, he said that it was the sign that tells you that you can push your bike up the ramp to the door. Humorous & harmless 🙂 In his life, that was his only purpose for that sign. But the book gave me the opening to talk about wheelchairs & people with disabilities. We had seen a man going into church in a wheelchair just a few days before so it was a good opportunity to talk about it.
Similarly, Nurture Shock talks about discussing race with your children. A lot of times we fall into the trap of thinking that our children don’t see color or race, but many studies have found that that is not true. The studies found that talking openly about race & skin color decreased negative feelings about other races. The explanation is that children notice differences in themselves & others (hair color, gender, skin color, etc); & naturally children think positive thoughts of those similar to them & negative thoughts about those different from them. Even children who were in very mixed neighborhoods had negative impressions of other races (sometimes even more-so than more segregated areas).
Continue reading on The Huffington Post…