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Keywords: Indian-American parents, multicultural issues, secular, global studies, lessons about India, cultural awareness, cultural literacy, culture, heritage, global education, cultural parenting
This are some of the things you will find on this website:
Ruchi and her two children have used lessons from this website since 2007
The Teach India Project a 501(c)3 non-profit
registered in the USA.
The Teach India Project is an outgrowth of a unique collaboration between parents and educators.
The parent story: In 2004 four mothers with children in the same school in the United States found that they all wanted to teach their children about India. Two of the moms grew up in the USA while the other two had relocated here as adults. Each was originally from a different part of India. All had enrolled their children in activities related to India but felt that something was lacking. Their children were not making the connections to India they wanted. Something more was needed. They noticed that their children lived in two completely parallel cultural worlds and feared for the stress that was in store for them.
The moms decided to fill the gap themselves and started a study group about India with their children. They called this group Indianroots. Many of the things described here draw on the experiences of the parents and children of Indianroots.
The teacher story: At this school teachers stayed connected with students who would come back to visit and tell them about how difficult it had been to grow up in an environment defined by stereotypes and bias and peer pressure to conform to a cultural norm. The teachers pushed their administration to develop programs on global education and multicultural literacy. They engaged with parents to create teaching kits about India and the collaboration began.
The Teach India Project was incorporated in 2007.
Learnings from the Indianroots
We are a community of co-learners. All of us in the group, children and adults, share our collective knowledge and experience and learn from each other
We believe that religion and ritual are personal to each family and are best taught at home.
Our purpose is to develop cultural literacy so that we share with our children a broad range of specific knowledge (about India) that makes good communication possible. We hope to go beyond learning that one might acquire from a textbook to real life that is interwoven with art, expression, history and experience. Cultural literacy is not an educational aim but a guarantee that parents, children and grandparents will understand and relate better to each other.
Our further purpose is to ensure that our children are multiculturally literate so that they value diversity, understand the perspectives of other cultural groups, are sensitive to issues of bias, racism, prejudice and stereotyping and are willing to actively engage with other cultures.
At the end of the day we hope that our children have the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to function effectively within their own cultural communities, within the cultures of whichever country they live in, and in the global community. Strong positive cultural identification within their own ethnic, cultural and language groups is the foundation that we are building for this.