Spiritual Diversity Tools in Early Childhood Education
Many moons ago, this country actually had an issue with racial bigotry and prejudice. No, really, we did. I’m not suggesting that it still doesn’t exist, and unfortunately in some cases it remains an extreme issue, but I am saying with confidence that the problem has been drastically reduced. Unfortunately, the more positive outlook in this area is going the wrong direction when it comes to the subject of spiritual diversity.
The challenges to educating our children on the aspect of spiritual child developmentAï¿½ are similar in premise to the challenges of educating them on the aspects of racial diversity, but the tools are not. Back in the day, the public school system committed time and resources to early childhood education in the area of racial stereotyping and bigotry. Books and film (8 millimeter I’m sorry to admit to) were readily available and a part of the school mandate. But the separation of church and state brings an added level of complexity to addressing the issue at hand. The argument here is that while we are discussing the different faiths, we are discussing them in the context of an adjective rather than discussing the intricacies of their faith. The reality is that you can’t fight city hall, and until this issue is formerly addressed, we will be left to our own devices. But what are these devices? What tools are at our disposal to bring this so important issue to the table?
Without ever touching on the intricacies of any religion, the company espouses a message of respect, compassion and understanding amongst children of different belief systems. These messages are conveyed in beautifully illustrated children’s stories that show these diverse characters working as a team as they address the challenges in their everyday affairs and adventures. The redundant imagery of these characters playing and laughing together conveys a clear message to the young viewer that playing with kids of different backgrounds really is ok.