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Monday, 8 October 2018

BENEFITS OF CULTURAL EXCHANGE



Talking about multicultural education may seem repetitive and
redundant if we refer the discourse to a privileged school context,
attended by students belonging to wealthy families. The discourse
may change if we consider a different type of schools, particularly
schools with a huge lack of benefits, facilities and materials. Children belonging to the poorest quarters or villages often attend this kind of schools; their chance to learn is limited to school possibilities. Any other kind of knowledge is not affordable or very difficult to obtain. Associations like HEEALS, not only give them a general knowledge
about basic habits that helps to maintain them healthy, but also give them the chance to be in contact with interns coming from all over the world. This contact is the bridge that introduces them to all worlds’
cultures, without travel. One of the first results of this positive cultural contamination is the
increase of curiosity. As everybody knows, children’s mind is
particularly absorbent; that means that they can easily learn a lot of
information in different environments and situations. This is why a
contact with people coming from different culture may represent a
positive way to classify new information. This process will be
absolutely helpful to break prejudices against other culture. In fact,
often, these prejudices are caused by ignorance or lack of information
about people that come from distant countries.
During HEEALS intern's experience, children can talk with them
before and after workshops, asking them a lot of questions about
family, habits and lifestyle. This kind of conversation brings children
in contact with intern's country, breaking boundaries and prejudices.
Another point in favour of this working method is that kids may be
more likely to listen to someone that can catch them through curiosity
and different aspect ore behaviour. Sometimes, in fact, happens that
intern have new ideas or tricks to catch child’s attention such as
games, songs or dances that comes from intern's country.
The result of this working method is already showing good effects. In
fact, meeting a new intern children start to ask questions and to
compare different country characteristics and peculiarity. In this way
they not only are able to compare their own experience with other
countries reality, but also they can make a comparison between two
different countries on the base of intern's stories and habits.
In the end, it is important to mention the importance of the mutual
personal growth. Indeed, children are not the only beneficiaries of
this method; interns have also the big chance to actually experience
children's reality. These benefits not only have a positive influence on
intern's studies and research, but also on his personal and emotional
sphere.
-Laura


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