Resource reminder: Building Belonging toolkit

Published on Tuesday, 21 February 2017
Last updated on Wednesday, 08 December 2021

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Late in 2016 the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) released the 'Building Belonging' toolkit for early childhood education and care providers.

In the hurly burly of the end of the year we worried news of the release of this free resource might be lost, so we thought a reminder might be helpful as we face the start of a new calendar year.

Building Belonging is a comprehensive toolkit of early education resources, which includes:

  • The 'Building Belonging' Educator Guide
  • Three lesson plans (which are linked to the Early Years Learning Framework and the Australian Curriculum) with accompanying lesson materials
  • Three posters to display in your setting/staff room
  • An educator information sheet on 'Responding to comments and questions about Cultural Diversity and Racial Identity'
  • 'All my friends and me' e-book, which can be printed out, or displayed on a computer or smart device.
  • 'Colours of Australia' song with accompanying action sheet, which can be played on a computer or downloaded and played using a portable music device.
  • 'Discussing cultural diversity with your child' information sheet for parents and carers
  • 'A World of Flavours' activity sheet for children to complete with their families. These resources can all be downloaded from the Australian Human Rights Commission.

The toolkit aims to encourage respect for cultural diversity, tackle racial prejudice in early childhood settings and teach educators and carers how to manage racial prejudice if and when they experience it in their service.

The AHRC says early childhood settings are the ideal place for children to learn racial tolerance and that they offer a rich environment for children to form friendships with people from different cultures and backgrounds.

Early childhood education and care providers have a significant role in encouraging and facilitating these relationships and importantly are required to cultivate 'respect for diversity' and exercise 'cultural competency' under the Early Years Learning Framework.

The AHRC says that by teaching respect for cultural diversity, educators will assist children to:

  • learn about their cultural background and develop a strong sense of self identity
  • learn about and appreciate cultures and traditions other than their own
  • learn to enjoy and respect differences and recognise universal characteristics we all share
  • learn about racial prejudice and understand why it should be challenged.

The resources in the Building Belonging toolkit have been designed to work in the full range of early childhood settings and will support and complement existing policies, practices and programs.

For more information and to view the toolkit and the educator resources visit the AHRC website.

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