“The world is your oyster” has never been truer than it is today. Because of globalisation, traveling has never been easier, and it has resulted in more than 200 million people living in a country that they were not born in!
Today’s children will one day work, study and live with people from all over the world, and we feel that it is important for our kids to be aware of the world and to appreciate different cultures. We’d love to take them for a trip around the world but until that dream comes true, we’ve adopted a rather broad approach in the hope of inculcating their interest in the world around them.
1. Read, read, read!
The library is a wonderful source of information. We borrow information books on countries, as well as stories written about or from those countries. Older kids will have no problem with non-fictional information books, but younger ones may find them a little dry, so that’s where storybooks come into play! Here are some books that we like (many of these books are part of a series so be sure to keep an eye out for them):
One World Together by Laurence and Catherine Anholt
This is Paris by M. Sasek
Madeline at the White House by John BemelmansA Walk in London by Salvatore Rubbino
I Lost My Tooth in Africa by Penda Diakite
The Danger Zone : Avoid Working in the Forbidden City! by Jacqueline Morley
Tutankhamun and the Golden Chariot by Damien Harvey
Anna Carries Water by Olive Senior
When you go to Melbourne by Maree Coote
Kimchi and Calamari by Rose Kent
Miyako from Tokyo (this is part of a lovely series of children introducing their daily lives in their cities)
2. Watch videos
Want to get the gist of a city in less than 5 minutes? There’s no better way than to check out tourism videos! It may not depict the true city, but it’s definitely a good starting point for further discussions and deeper research. Or do a specific search like “how to wear a Japanese kimono”, or “Scottish highland dance”, or “African musical instruments” or “how to do the hula dance”.
We are very lucky to be living in a global city with people from all over the world. This means that all kinds of cuisines are available at every corner! Indonesian bakso, sushi and teppanyaki from Japan, dumplings and noodles from China, kebabs and doners from Turkey, tacos, burritoes and quesadillas from Mexico, kimchi from Korea, sauerkraut from Germany, smoked salmon from Sweden….
Learning while eating? I have no problems with that!
4. Art and Craft
Most children enjoy art and craft, so squeezing in a little lesson on another culture through art and craft time is a sneaky way to learn. Make Hawaiian flower leis, Chinese lanterns, Japanese carp kites, Australian aboriginal masks… the internet is your friend!
5. Get a country delivered to your doorstep!
We’re so happy to be partnering with Little Passports to share with you on something very exciting! For the past couple of months, our kids have been camping next to the mailbox, eagerly waiting for their monthly subscription packages from Little Passports.
Their first pack arrived in the form of these gorgeous well-made little suitcases, and at first I was worried that they would get a suitcase each month. They’re beautiful, but where was I going to store that many little suitcases! Thankfully, kids will only receive a suitcase in their first month, and for subsequent months, they’ll get little envelopes (they can then store the contents in the suitcases).
Early Explorers kits have so many wonderful things in them that you can almost see the hundreds of questions popping up in thought bubbles from your child’s head as soon as he opens the pack. Unlike the World Edition where the older kids explore a country each month, the younger kids have themes. This month we’re halfway through learning about music around the world, and last month we had so much fun with landmarks.
The brightly world map was nice to have, but what my 4 year old really really really enjoyed was sticking the continent stickers on her little suitcase. Our deal was that she could stick a sticker on after we learnt more about that particular continent. Phew – else, she would have gone through them in 60 seconds! Her little passport included many activities that she zipped through in a flash.
Our favourite thing among all the kits we received? These little landmark tokens – I wasn’t sure what kind of quality they would be, but was pleasantly surprised to see that they were very well made. Hooray!
Find out more about Early Explorer kits here.
World Edition kits are also filled with fun, but since the activities are geared toward older children – the puzzles are more challenging (like this month, the theme was Japan and there were beautiful origami papers and instructions included), and there is also the option to log on to Little Passports’ page for more fun and games, which they can access by means of a secret password – love it!
Kids receive a postcard from “their penpals”, Sam and Sofia, which is a fun thing for them. They also get a little souvenir from that month’s country – isn’t the little sushi eraser the cutest! Last month we were introduced to Brazil, and Miss 8 received a real amethyst! It’s still one of her most treasured items.
Thanks to our sponsor, Little Passports, we’re thrilled to announce this wonderful giveaway! One lucky reader stands to win a 6-month subscription pack (the winner may choose which subscription they would like)
How to take part in this giveaway:
1. Like Little Passports Facebook page
2. Like Life is for Exploring Facebook page
3. Comment on this post, telling me why you’d like to win this set. You must leave your email address and country (just in case there are remote locations that Little Passports does not ship to).
This content ends on 23.59 of 25 December 2016. Incomplete entries will be disqualified. By participating in this giveaway, you agree that your name and email address will be forwarded to Little Passports for a representative to contact you to coordinate the delivery of your subscription package. A winner will be randomly picked, be contacted and verified (so make sure your email address is correct!) before results are announced. Results will be announced on the Life is for Exploring Facebook page.
This is a worldwide contest and open to anyone in a global destination that Little Passports ships to. Good luck!
** Edited: This contest has ended. Congratulations, Grace Tan, you’re the lucky winner!