Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at Kidzrus
Salford is an extremely multicultural area and at Kidzrus we are justifiably proud to have children from a broad range of backgrounds and family diverse units attending our five settings.
As Early Years educators, we’ve got a critical role to play in the way we teach that diversity matters. We continually invite our children and their families to share their ideas and express their opinions. We are aware that our children are curious about their own identity and others, and how we all play and work together. Children should and do see themselves and their families reflected in the curriculum, and can draw parallels to their own personal lives and we ensure that all children feel able to ask questions about diversity and identity to the key adults in our settings, and adults feel comfortable answering these questions in thoughtful and honest ways so that children may consider the responses and think in an informed and critical way.
Kidzrus managers and practitioners embrace this and work tirelessly with our children, their families and our wider community to promote and equality and diversity in all aspects of our daily life to ensure that all children and their families are represented and included in terms of family dynamics and where they fit into life in modern day Britain. What we deliver on a daily basis allows our children and their families to be represented, respected and valued.
Throughout the year Kidzrus has a broad calendar of events that enable our children and their families to share their own faiths and cultures and we discretely incorporate equality and diversity in the fun activities across all key areas of learning that our children participate in; thereby giving them an opportunity to explore and celebrate what makes us the same, and more importantly what makes us different.
As the current interest with our Pre-School children is “what makes us different?” at Kidzrus, The Lodge they have been able to discover that many children have allergies or are unable to eat certain foods. This may be for various reasons such as cultural, religious, intolerances, allergies and dietary requirements or just parent choice. We work continuously with our children promote healthy eating and give them a selection of seasonal, fresh and locally sourced foods. In doing this we also raise awareness of intolerances and allergies to specific foods, thereby helping staff and children to feel included at mealtimes and in everyday life.
The book “Luca The Lion Who Cant Eat Meat” by Tersha Cutmore is one that we have read with our children on many occasions as the story always catches their attention and promotes questions and critical thinking.
Tersha Cutmore kindly agreed to do a live Zoom reading to our children. Prior to the reading, Tersha’s son, Luca did a beautiful video introducing both himself and the story. Luca is an allergy sufferer and has often faced many difficulties surrounding the foods he is unable to eat and the alternative options available to him. Throughout the process Luca often felt left out and talks about his struggles and how this prompted his Mum to write the book to help our children and others understand the issues around allergies and what makes us all different. Regardless of our differences, Luca ended the introduction by wishing everyone an enjoyable life.
Whilst listening to the story the children were curious as to “Why can’t Luca eat meat? and “Why do some children drink different milk”? One child said that it made her feel very sad that some children cannot eat meat. After listening to Tersha’s reading the Pre –School staff and children discussed their peers having to drink different milk and being unable to eat meals that contain cheese or eggs and also about a child who can only eat Halal meat. This promoted a further discussion around the various substitutes that they have in their meals that are freshly prepared daily at nursery such as Quorn and dairy free milk, and that they are just as tasty and nutritious.
We have learnt so much from this lovely story – that many children and adults have different allergies and that there are some foods that they cannot or don’t like to eat… this makes us all different and unique, but more importantly that we can still be involved and lead a very happy and healthy lifestyle.
Summary of book:
Luca the Lion is 5 years old and has allergies. When he starts school he begins to really struggle with his feelings and emotions as he watches his friends eat and drink things that he can’t. His friends help him see that he is not the only one and encourage him to focus on the positives and to look on the bright side of life. This rhyming, witty and at times touching story is Tersha Cutmore’s debut children’s book and the beautiful illustrations have been drawn by school mum friend, Victoria Ward-Fowler. Inspired by her own son Luca, his allergies and their experiences as a family, this book is not only for allergy sufferers; but for any child who feels different, whatever the reason. The book is recommended for age 3+ and it really is a must have in any therapeutic/paediatric setting and school or home library.