A great way to build understanding and promote tolerance is to breakdown misunderstandings. Many children - and adults for that matter - are intolerant towards those things they do not understand. Fear also plays a big role. It is important, therefore, to help students push back against feelings of fear or discomfort. Introducing them to the diversity they can find in their classroom, school or community, you help them see each other’s similarities and celebrate their differences.
Note: this is a great pairing activity - where the younger/primary students/children are partnered/paired with an older group of students/youth. This will provide students with access to more cultures and languages, as well as ways to access them.
I hope you all know how important it is that everyone feels welcome in our classroom. We all work very hard each and every day to welcome one another and to treat each other with respect. But, what happens if we have a visitor who maybe doesn’t speak our language and doesn’t know that we wanted them to feel welcome here? What could we do? (wait for responses)
We’re going to start working on a group welcome banner. First, has anyone ever visited another country where they speak a language other than English? (collect countries) Now, does anyone here speak a language other than English? (collect languages) Does anyone know who to say “Welcome” in these languages? (collect answers)
We want to collect as many ways of saying Welcome as we can and we’re going to build a big banner welcoming everyone to our classroom.
A great way to build understanding and promote tolerance is to breakdown misunderstandings.