Early Childhood Education and Care News
March 16, 2021
Welcome, this Sunday 21 March is Harmony Day and we've a host of ideas for helping you mark this important occasion in your service. Also, how to tap into the rich and wonderful resource that is cultural and linguistic diversity among the children and families in your community.
Harmony Day: Fun activities to celebrate diversity
This Sunday 21 March marks Harmony Day – an Australian Government initiative to celebrate cultural and religious diversity in this country. With an ongoing message of 'everyone belongs', it's about respect, inclusiveness and a universal sense of belonging.

Orange is the official colour of Harmony Week. The bright and cheery hue signifies social communication, freedom of ideas and meaningful conversations. And it's a great way to get children and staff involved – set the scene by decorating play equipment and the classroom with orange ribbons and encourage everyone to wear orange clothing (or a ribbon) or a traditional outfit from their culture.

Then carve out time to do some fun activities that celebrate Harmony Day and explore the messages behind it. Here are a few easy suggestions the children are sure to enjoy:
Embracing the rich resource of cultural and linguistic diversity
Experiences in early education services are often a child's first encounter of education outside the home, and an inclusive learning environment that embraces and supports the child and their culturally based skills, talents, abilities and values are of paramount importance. A child's ideas about and responses to diversity are influenced by what they see and hear around them.

Swedish academic, Professor Gunilla Dahlberg recommends a 'pedagogy of welcoming and hospitality' to everyone working in early education. This enables early childhood centres to create quality learning environments where children can grow and learn freely, knowing they are loved.
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