ABCMouse launches an educational program focused on diversity and cultural humility for kids
The digitally-based academy, intended for young children, is offering a new feature to teach diversity, equity, and inclusion
ABCmouse, a widely popular digitally-based children’s education program, is rolling out a new feature that teaches children as young as two years old “cultural humility” as part of their new diversity, equality, and inclusion (DEI) initiative.
The program is aimed at children across the U.S. between the ages of 2-8 through a new short children’s video series called “Everybody’s Garden.”
Dr. Nika Fabienke, senior director of curriculum at Age of Learning who also serves as the co-chair of the DEI task force, spoke with theGrio to discuss the new video series.
“They want to start early and start in an age-appropriate way. That allows us for the kids to have multiple exposures and diverse exposures to the information. Hence, it’s like you would teach any other content area,” Fabienke told theGrio.
The video series will be compiled of short three-to-four-minute shows that introduce the idea of cultural humility to children in a fun and engaging way through a warm story of friendship and self-understanding.
The central characters within the show are Ivy, an Afro-Cuban little girl, and Niko, her best friend, who is Filipino-American.
“We are putting BIPOC children at the center of this new video series, and then the task force we really wanted to lay on the idea of cultural humility,” said Fabienke. “You put those two together, and we’ve gotten these characters that are specific and authentic.”
The episodes are cultivated to be subtle for kids’ experiences and apply repetition of topics surrounding cultural humility so students can genuinely retain the content. For example, the first episode teaches that you should never assume things about someone just because they are different from you, and that it is OK to ask questions of those who may not look or sound like you.
To help parents guide their children through these new topics, ABCMouse also includes a viewing guide for parents to help have conversations with their kids about cultural humility.
In the future, Fabienke emphasized that the platform will implement positive points and takeaways throughout the video that allows students to stop and reflect to make sure they’re noticing the message.
“We’re also looking to build up the whole ‘Everybody’s Garden’ world, so right now, the curriculum folks and I are looking at other modalities so that kids can have a multimedia experience, so it’s not only videos.”
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