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Raising Race-Conscious Kids in Singapore: Parent Resources on How To Talk to Your Kids about Racism

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In response to recent events and a global conversation about race, racism, and the importance of talking to our kids about them, here are parenting resources to inform your conversation for kids of every age

Mamas Joline Lim and Imelda Bonnett, admins of the Respectful/Mindful Parenting group from Chapter Zero Singapore, shared their own experiences dealing with racism in Singapore and talking to their children about it. Below, they have provided parenting resources to help kickstart your journey talking to your kids about race and racism. 

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Your Parenting Mojo, a research-based parenting site, has a great series of podcasts that talk about concepts of implicit bias, privilege in parenting, and how to talk about and teach race. Armed with information on these concepts, you can raise your children to think critically about perceptions and beliefs.

Some other excellent podcasts for parents covering topics relating to race and social justice include Code Switch by NPR, Pod Save the People by Crooked Media, and The Good Ancestor Podcast with author and anti-racism education Layla F. Saad. Brené Brown also did an excellent interview this week with Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to be an Antiracist (and Antiracist Baby).

Articles & Websites

Children’s books

According to Rudine Sims Bishop, Professor Emerita of Education at the Ohio State University, “Books are sometimes windows.” Books can help us understand others who are different from us by opening a window into their human experiences, and “change our attitudes towards difference,” whilst also enabling us to reflect on similarities in our lives as we step into the shoes of the characters in the story.

Storytelling is one of the easiest ways to teach children about race, equity, diversity and inclusion. Children’s books that celebrate diversity play a very big role in raising race-conscious children that become engaged, educated and empathetic members of society, as they help to reduce stereotypes and combat prejudice. Children need maps in order to help them navigate an increasingly global society, and if they only read books that represent their own backgrounds they might think that these experiences are the only ones that matter.

Asian literature

International literature

  • What’s the Difference? Being Different is Amazing by Doyin Richards
  • Whoever You Are by Mem Fox
  • Sulwe by Lupita Nyong’o
  • The Colors of Us by Karen Katz
  • Everyone Matters by Pat Thomas
  • This is How We Do It by Matt Lamothe
  • Everybody Cooks Rice by Norah Dooley
  • Say Hello! By Rachel Isadora
  • Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed (story of the first African American woman to travel in space, Mae Jemison)
  • AntiRacist Baby by Ibram X. Kendi
  • Or ask your friendly librarian for their recommendations of books!

Connect with other parents

Join online facebook groups like Respectful / Mindful Parenting Singapore to connect with parents. It is a safe space to learn and discuss about respectful / mindful parenting styles and compassionate communication.

Terra Luna Yoga and Chapter Zero Singapore have come together to host a free online Mother’s Circle on 26 June to talk about race and racism. Spaces are limited as they intend to keep the circle small and intimate, so be sure to register soon!

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Lead image sourced via Getty; girl with headphones image by LilGadgets; girl reading image sourced via Lupita Nyong'o

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