Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Connecting with your Child's Culture

Keeping a connection with your child's culture comes in many forms. There are the subtle, day to day activities like eating at local restaurants and visiting markets that specialize in traditional foods, or watching movies, reading books, and discussing current news events and politics that relate to your child's birth country.

A more formal connection can be established by enrolling in language and culture classes, or belonging to associations (Gladney Family Association, Families with Children from China or Organization of Chinese Americans) and local museums (Museum of Chinese Americans) that celebrate and teach the culture. These organizations are a wonderful resource for media materials, local activities and celebrations. They can also offer ideas, such as suggestions on how your child can celebrate Chinese New Year in school.

Staying connected with other adopted children, either from the child's travel group or children from the same country, is invaluable when it comes to solidifying the cultural connection. Meeting for social gatherings, going to local cultural fairs, attending officials' visits or sharing in holiday celebrations, give children the opportunity to have fun being together and share special moments.

For some adoptive families, traveling to the child's birth country for a heritage tour offers them an amazing way to see, hear and taste their birth country's culture first hand.

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