How Customs and Heritage Shape Communities

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How Customs and Heritage Shape Communities

Something as simple as food has a rich cultural history. From this springboard students take a look at the heritage of many people groups in the United States. Drawing from historical and community resources students will discover how people all over the world have left their mark on the land they settled. And, while the differences are compared and contrasted, children will be caught up in the rhythm of Cinco De Mayo, the celebration of Chinese New Year, the family focus of Kwanzaa and recognize the ways they are all part of the same community.

Discover the heritage of people and the many different cultures that make up our communities.

  1. Students will understand how communities and cultures develop over time.
  2. Students will appreciate the customs of local communities.
  3. Students will recognize that people from different backgrounds can come together in a community.

  1. Personal Heritage. Encourage students to look closely at their own values and traditions and share them with the class. Have students talk with their parents about their heritage and bring in examples of clothing, food, or other symbols of culture to share.
  2. Reach Out. Have students (with the help of a parent) find a neighbor, family friend, or acquaintance that seems to come from a different background. Have students compile a list of questions and ask to interview the person. Questions should include finding out the cultural background, and some family history as well as ordinary likes and dislikes. Have students share any insights they gain with the class.

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