But in a very typical Australian context, some of the major areas that diversity can easily be identified are in the areas of attitudes and believes towards religious beliefs of people. This is said without a doubt of acknowledgement that Australia is a multi-practicing religious nation. Regardless of the fact that there is the freedom of worship enshrined in the constitution of the country, there continues to be the sharing of different attitudes and beliefs towards the religious practices of other people who do not belong directly to our own religions. In my experience with a class of very young early childhood students in a school that was different from where I usually worked, where I had gone to undertake my practice, I came to realize that our Australian society would be better created if issues of religious misconceptions and religious discrimination are dealt with right at the early stages of the development of the children. Diversity Experience with Kids My experience was such that I had gone to the school to undertake my practice wearing a headscarf, which is known in our religious parlance as hijab. The wearing of the hijab has several religious connotations that make it compulsory for every virtuous woman to have on. As part of its religious significance, the hijab or headscarf represents a veil which denotes the separation of man or the world from the creator, who is God (Wagner, 2006). However, the community I had gone to teach, being dominated as an Anglo Saxon community seemed not to be too familiar with the use of the hijab. Most of these kids in my class who had fair skin looked at me as belonging to a totally different sect of practice that they were so unfamiliar with. Initially, not many of them wanted to approach me at all. The situation even expanded to include most of their parents and other curious colleague teachers. With time however, some of the kids mustered courage and started approaching me as a normal person because my resistance to continue using the hijab and yet go about my duties normally proved to them that I was just as a normal person as they were. Indeed, some of these kids were even bold enough to ask me about why I was wearing the headscarf, questioning me by asking, “Where is your hair?” Some colleague teachers did same, as well as some parents. I used this as an opportunity to explain the religious connotation of the hijab to the kids and the need for them to accept diversity. Personal Reflection On a personal note, I believe that Australia stands to be a better place for the future for us all if the need to incorporate the teaching and learning of diversity, especially religious diversity at an early stage in children is taken more seriously. As the saying goes, the children are the future of the country. If these kids who are the future of the country are well vest in issues of religious and ethnic differences, some of the little scuffles and riots that arise from religious and ethnic confronts will be a thing of the past (Brophy, 2002). Indeed, most of the diversities that are experienced by us as people are those that we do not grow up to pick or decide on. There are others that cannot be changed entirely. Example of those that we pick up at very early stages of our lives is religious diversity. Ethnicity is also an example of diversity that we cannot change for another. These are reason that no
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Title: DIVERSITY IN EARLY CHILDHOOD Name: Institution: Professor: Course: Date: DIVERSITY IN EARLY CHILDHOOD Religious Diversity in Australia Diversity is indeed the beauty that spices up life giving meaning to the unique differences of all people, and allowing an expression of the creative background in nature (MacDonald, 2010)…
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2 pages (500 words)Essay
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