5 Ways To Raise Inclusive Kids

“That’s weird!” I heard from one of my students in the lunchroom. As if I were a rabbit, my ears immediately sprung up and I walked over to see what our young learner was referring to.

Turns out, it was a particular type of food another student had in their lunchbox.

As a child, I also experienced this many times. I would often get picked on for my chicken tikka pita wraps or for using Punjabi words for food items I didn’t yet know the English term for. It’s easy for adults to shrug their shoulders and say “they didn’t mean it”, but when it came to this particular scenario, emphasizing that there is no ‘normal’ or ‘weird’ was my main priority.

“Why don’t we try that again, hey? Can we say: that’s not something I’ve seen before, can you tell me about it?” Gently correcting children and providing a better phrase alternative will help them understand and set them up for treating their future peers with respect.

The children went on to have a conversation. Not only was the original student learning about new cultures and different foods, but the other student also got to take pride in sharing more about their differences and what makes them unique.

Here are 5 additional ways you can raise inclusive kids, both in the classroom and at home!


Celebrate and acknowledge differences.

Be respectful when talking about people from different backgrounds–whether that’s race, gender, abilities, or anything else in between. If you treat all people with kindness and respect, your child will too.

There is always going to be friendly competition among children when it comes to differences, but where do you draw the line? Our aim at Wymbin is to create a safe space for every child to feel welcome and have a sense of belonging. When children start to develop a sense of what makes them different, we encourage these differences to be embraced rather than singled out. You may often hear “girls only!” or “these toys are only for boys!” While this may seem like “a bit of fun” it’s setting the foundation for children to exclude others in their future. We encourage our young learners to invite each other to play, communicate and learn from one another no matter their gender, race, ability, or other differences.

Children learn best from observing the role models around them. They’re always watching, listening, and learning!