Please Pass the Dumplings
Monday, May 16, 2022
Being a new student from another country or even being a new student from another school can be daunting.
The United States is a pluralistic society filled with immigrants from all over the world. It is important for parents, grandparents and educators to teach children that each person's appearance, personality, beliefs, interests, differences, and culture bring something unique to a relationship.
One way to learn about different cultures is through food. The foods people eat tell a story about who they are and where they come from. In large area countries, the foods people eat depend upon their region.
Let's teach children to embrace their heritage through food and learn about other cultures by trying their foods. Remember, even though people come from different cultures and have different traditions, certain foods can be found in many cultures in some version.
A perfect example is a dumpling. Dumplings are delicious! They are dough filled with one or a few of the following: beef, pork, seafood, cheese, sauerkraut, potatoes, vegetables and fruit. They are then steamed, boiled or fried.
Cultures are so diverse. Yet, these countries have a dumpling. And there may even be more! They may look a little different and taste a little different, but they are still dumplings:
China: Dim Sum, PotStickers
Italy: Gnocchi, Ravioli
Viet Nam: Banh Bot Loc
South Africa: Souskluitjies
What's the lesson for children? That although people look like they are very different, there are also many similarities. Get to know that new student. Learn more about them and, most important, include them so they have a feeling of belonging.