Short or Tall, Big or Small,
Hair that is curly or straight or in between,
Marks and scars that can be seen. Almond eyes or a round button nose,
Different types of skin that glows.
We’re all same and different
In the way we look.
Our hair, skin, eyes or even our elbow nook.
We’re sharing a cute, fun poem that can be found in Toco’s HOW WE LOOK Playbook - a book that uses stories and activities to spark conversations on similarities and differences in our physical features.
But have you ever wondered why it’s important to teach our little ones to appreciate different physical features? Here’s what our little ones get out of it..
- Learn to value differences: Our little ones learn that differences in physical appearance are natural and that they should be valued rather than judged.
- Builds positive self-image: Little ones who are taught to appreciate different physical features are more likely to have a positive self-image. As they grow, they are less likely to feel self-conscious or ashamed about their own physical features ( especially in their teenage years) and are more likely to feel confident and proud of themselves.
- Reduce bullying: Teaching your little ones to appreciate different physical features can help to reduce bullying. When your little ones learn to accept and celebrate differences, they are less likely to make fun of or bully others based on their physical appearance.
- Encourages empathy: Your little one learns to understand and appreciate the experiences of others who may look different from them. They learn to put themselves in someone else’s shoes.
- Promotes inclusivity: It encourages your little one to be more accepting and inclusive of people who may look different from them. They learnt to go beyond a person’s physical appearance and look for stronger connections.
While building your little one’s self image is a work in progress, here are a few things you can do to make the journey easier..
- Start with yourself: Our little ones learn by example, so it is important to model self-love and acceptance. Talk positively about your own physical features and avoid making negative comments about your body or others'. Our little ones have big ears and are constantly absorbing everything they hear. If you don’t like your physical features, chances are they won’t like theirs either.
- Encourage positive language: Use positive language when talking about physical features. Instead of saying someone is "fat" or "ugly," use descriptive and respectful language such as "curvy" or "unique." Be conscious of negative tones and phrases when describing people.
- Emphasize the importance of character: Teach your little one that physical appearance is not the most important thing. It’s just one part of a person. Emphasize that character traits such as kindness, empathy, and intelligence are more important than physical features.
- Provide Exposure: Expose your little one to diverse physical features through books, movies, and TV shows. Talk about how everyone is unique and beautiful in their own way.
- Normalize differences: Celebrate differences in physical features, such as different skin colors, hair textures, and body shapes. Teach your little one that our differences are what makes us special and the world beautiful. If we all looked exactly the same, it wouldn't be a very fun world to live in, would it?
Follow @indigrowkids for more play and conversation about raising kids in a diverse, multicultural world. Head to indigrowkids.com for books, games, playkits, songs and more...
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