How do you raise an open minded child?
Everywhere you go, you meet a wide range of people who are from different countries, have different beliefs and practice different religions. As a parent, teaching your child to view the world through his own lens and making decisions based on reality instead of bias and prejudice is one of your most important jobs. But how can parents prepare children for a multicultural world? Are you talking to your children about diversity?
1 parent has answered
By being an open-minded parent! And that includes speaking up when things aren't right and when other people are being narrow-minded. It's not always easy. Especially in the UK there is a bias towards Christianity in the curriculum, which skews the way RE is taught and leads to certain groups with a bullish Christian agenda being allowed to deliver 'history' assemblies or 'personal, social and moral' lessons. We have had to fight to undo some of this damage, meanwhile we try to expose the kids to all different cultures and backgrounds and try to get across that there are many more religions out there and that it's perfectly valid not to follow a religion. You wouldn't believe the hassles the kids have had about this.
It's also important, I think, not to make snide comments or jokes that kids won't recognise are meant in jest. There seem to be a few groups that are still fair game to some people, for example transgender people, and that's just not OK.
Kids seem to be born with an innate sense of justice and open-mindedness and this can be chipped away through thoughtlessness of those around. Kids should be encouraged to speak up if they see prejudice and narrow-mindedness in action. I was really proud when one of my children spoke up for a child who was being picked on because he said he was gay. Far prouder than if she'd just kept her head down and avoided 'trouble'.