Talking To Your Kids About Race

Sierra Vasquez   -  

May 25, 2020 changed the landscape of social justice in America forever. It’s the day that George Floyd became a casualty of police brutality – and a household name. As the country seemingly overnight became more aware of privilege and how to wield it, we found ourselves focused on the big picture – wanting to shake up the status quo and be better anti-racist allies.

Our children, meanwhile, were thinking less about the system and more about the individuals affected by it. As one child put it during prayer time, “I hope Mr. Floyd is doing well in heaven”. Oh my heart. So how do we talk to our children about race and racism? How do we increase their awareness in a time when we ourselves are often still cultivating our own? How do we put such big-picture ideas into context that’s relatable for them?

Fortunately the folks at EmbraceRace, partnered with MomsRising, have us covered with these 10 Tips for Teaching and Talking to Kids About Race. Available both online and as a PDF (in both Spanish and English), it’s a general, approachable guide on how to normalize diversity and talk to children about racial differences. Some takeaways? Talk early and often, celebrate people who have stood for what’s right, and don’t be afraid of the messy bits. If this is an area where your own awareness is still growing, it’s ok to bring your child in on that journey. You don’t need to have all the answers all the time. Let them see you grow. As the PDF says, “we’re less likely to pass on biases that we work to overcome”.