WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO SPECIFICALLY FOCUS ON THE TRANSITION OF CULTURES?

INTERCULTURAL EXPERIENCES AND HOW THEY CAN LEAD TO PARENT-EDUCATOR PARTNERSHIP CHALLENGES

Easing anxiety and opening up a line of communication is the educator’s role. Educators work to include important information including local transport, local health centres and emergency numbers to help new families feel more comfortable and supported. This is to help families know that they are thinking of the best interests of the child and family. The parents can help the child settle into the new environment better if they themselves have confidence in the kindergarten and have discussed the settling in process with the classroom educators. 

The role the educators will take, in order to help settle in and integrate new children into the classroom, will be that of giving individualized attention based on what the child needs. In that respect, families can help educators to be more in tuned with their child by expressing what kind of physical attention the child is used to, what helps calm them down, what type of tools may have been used in the previous kindergarten if there was one. All this information helps to clear up a variety of cultural differences and help educators better understand the child. This is also to help the families feel confident settling their child into this environment. 

Parents may notice that after entering kindergarten, their child is crying more upon seeing them or sleeping less in the evening. They may develop concerns that their child was too young or that the educators should be doing something different to respond to the behaviour of their child. To avoid this, the concepts culture-sensitive adaptation should be discussed in the home visit or in preliminary talks to help the educators be aware. Parents and educators must be aware that the child can make a great adaptation at a very young age with the help cooperation and communication between educators and families. 

 In Arno’s situation, these concepts and ideas are very important. If the family does not fully understand the language of the kindergarten, then they will need to work extra hard together with the educators to build a good relationship and find ways to communicate. Even if, for Arno’s family, this involves typing up emails in their language and then google translating them, and the educators do the same. They can understand that it won’t be perfect, but it will be a start towards a line of better communication. 

Arno’s cultural background and his traumatic experiences will make this settling in extra hard, in order to help him and the family, the educators need to know as much as possibly about what he experiences so that they can be sure not to trigger any of his fears and anxieties or at least find tools and ways to help him adapt and feel safe. If struggles still occur, then finding a translator is the best way to try to communicate.