Children need to learn as early as possible that no two people are the same. Some of the people they meet will have different upbringings, different religious beliefs and different cultural traditions. Parents can help their children understand and respect people’s differences and various cultural backgrounds; here is some advice from a primary school in Cambridge.
Books and films in which the main characters are from different countries are a great place to start. Your child will learn about family life, religious beliefs and various festivities. Together you can discuss what is similar and what is different about your family and the one in the story. Learning about and understanding what makes people different from us is the first step to respecting and appreciating the way others live.
The idea is to expose your child to different cultures and religions as much as possible so that it becomes more “normal” for them. You could consider introducing new cultural traditions in your own home. For instance, if you prepare a calendar with various religious holidays, such as Eid, Diwali and Christmas etc. you can celebrate each one as they arise. If that seems a bit extreme, you could start with recipe books from all around the world and learn about traditional foods within different cultures.
Essentially, you need to embrace diversity as much as possible in your home, particularly if you want to raise respectful and open-minded little humans. You should always encourage curiosity in your child and refrain from shutting them down if they ask you any questions about different cultures or religions. Rather than telling them the answers right away, it’s a good idea to persuade them to research the answers themselves, as research will lead to a world of other interesting information.