To help connect expat kids with their passport culture, get creative!

If you would like to find additional ways for your kids to foster or retain a strong connection with your home country, it’s okay to be a little strategic.

Organised fun

As expat parents, we pay tribute to our roots in many ways on a daily basis. The food we cook at home. The music we play in the evening. Plus the languages we speak, the jokes we tell and the bedtime stories we read. Our kids will absorb a great deal of this. But, if you wish to go a little further, there’s no harm in having some organised fun.

Getting creative

“One great way for your kids to learn about, and take pride in their passport culture is to get them involved when preparing for a national holiday or cultural festival,” says Natasha Rekhi, the founder of Theatre4Kids, who uses the performing arts and other creative tools to help develop communication skills, confidence and wellbeing in children. “For example, as we’re Indian, our kids introduced the Festival of Colours to their classmates at school.”

Keep it local

If there are no embassy-sponsored events for your national day, why not throw your own celebration? “When kids from the neighbourhood saw us decorating our house for a festival, they were naturally curious. So they came over and asked my kids who they are, and where they are from, and joined the fun. When your kids get to share their culture, it becomes part of who they are,” says Natasha.

More the merrier

Don’t forget getting involved can be good for you, too, especially if you’re prone to feelings of homesickness. Perhaps there are compatriots of yours in the community. So why not take the lead and get together to double (or triple) the fun?

Getting online

It might be a little less social, but Natasha also uses virtual platforms with her kids. “Nowadays, there are really excellent online tours of cultural attractions. On weekends you can enjoy a 3D virtual visit to a museum or gallery in your hometown with your kids,” says Natasha, who agrees that some kids might not respond to anything that might seem too ‘educational’. “Sometimes we just watch Indian movies together or play classic board games from India. So whatever you do, make sure it’s fun for everyone!”

Photo: Pixabay

This article was originally published for the thousands of expat partners that Global Connection supports around the globe. It is reproduced here in its original form.

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