Mexican au pair Sofia, who lives with her host family in Massachusetts, recently visited a preschool classroom to share her culture with twelve 3- and 4-year-olds to promote cross-cultural communication and understanding. From animals to toys to food, she engaged the children and got them excited to learn about the world!
Sofia covered a range of topics throughout the course of her presentation, beginning with the Mexican flag, which she displayed to the children. Next she covered some Mexican cultural traditions, and then moved on to the children’s favorite topic of the day, Mexican food! As Sophia said, “I discovered that all of them have tried at least once Mexican food, and all of them love it (I love it too).” By showing the children that they already have a connection to Mexico through some of the foods they like to eat, Sofia taught her new friends that they are already becoming little global citizens.
After cuisine, Sofia talked about Mexican traditional costumes, and then moved on to another particularly fun topic, Mexican games. She brought with her two typical toys from Mexico, a balero (a wooden stick and top for catching) and tablitas magicas (also called a “magic ladder” or “Jacob’s ladder”). Says Sofia, “I brought the toys to the classroom so the children could have a chance to see them and play with them. This was a good idea, because none of them have ever seen toys like that so they were paying a lot of attention to how they work.”
The next topic that Sofia covered was Mexican animals, including the tlacuache, a creature similar to an opossum. Finally, she finished her presentation with a little Spanish lesson where the children learned to say hello and goodbye in Spanish and to count to three. The children got to color in the Mexican flag, and they took home some stickers.
Reflecting on her experience, Sofia said,
“I was really happy that they were really excited and motivated with my presentation. I learned that you are never too young to learn about different cultures, and I also was so impressed that 3-year-old kids are interested in learning about a different country, where they live, and how capable they are to understand and compare the differences between two countries.
I’m proud of myself for doing this presentation and having the opportunity to share with children about my culture. I would recommend any other au pair to do it. It is an amazing experience, and it is worth it!”
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