Once the kids have been exposed to the concept of culture, how do you decide what culture to choose? The kids need to choose two cultures. One is allowed to be their own (but it doesn’t have to be). The second culture must be different than their own. The kids will need to decide how these cultures are similar and how they are different.
Have the kids think about some cultures they would like to learn more about. Write down all of their ideas. Have each kid pick their favorite. Talk about what kind of things they would make/create if they did that culture. What kind of costumes, set pieces, and props. What kind of activities do they do. What kind of foods do they eat. Help them get a sense of what it would me to work with that culture. Do this with all the favorites.
Ask the kids if they want to have one of the cultures be their own or if they want two cultures that are not their own.
Then start to narrow down your cultures. If some of the cultures are extremely similar, ask the kids if they want two cultures that are very similar or if they want two that are more different. Use these types of questions to help narrow the pool down to just a few.
See if the kids have any particular interests, talents, or skills that they want to include in their presentation. Do these talents/interests/skills like up better with one culture or another?
Once you are down to your final choices, you can review the below list of cultural items (feel free to pick and choose from this list). But talk about the specifics of the various cultures. See why they like one or the other. Give each kid a chance to share their preferences and why. Then you have to vote or debate until you get down to your final decision.
- how/what we eat
- housing/who we live with/type of home/proximity
- manners (how close we stand, how we greet each other, how we address others older/younger/men/women, etc)
- jokes / humor
- type of work/work-life balance
- daily routine (siesta) / seasonal routine
- parenting/families (who is included in the family)
- free time / leisure / entertainment
- how we show respect (govt, elders)
- life cycle events (birth, coming of age, marriage, death)
- holidays and celebrations
- folklore (creation stories, myths and legends, etc.)
- communication (how we talk to each other; what we talk about)
- travel (how/why/frequency/method)
- community (how decisions get made for the group; how the people interact with each other)