About Cultural Exchange
Global Awareness brings expanded educational and cultural opportunities to the forefront for all Au Pair in America participants. With ongoing opportunities to not only “meet our global neighbor” but also to build “cross-cultural bridges,” the aim is to encourage better understanding of other cultures, improve communication between cultures, and support the concept of mutual acceptance.
Through the use of material on the Global Awareness website, presentations done in schools (PK-6) and special activities and contests which will involve host families, au pairs, and community counselors, Global Awareness goal is to emphasize that cultural diversity is a source of enrichment rather than a source of confusion and strife.
Cultural exchange is an avenue to expose our children to a bigger world- a world in which people speak different languages and participate in different traditions, a world of other cultures. We spark an interest in people who may not look the same, certainly don’t speak the same, but in so many ways are very similar. Au Pair in America is committed to supporting successful cultural exchanges for all its participants; we support the AIFS mission of “bringing the world together.”
We’ve asked our families, counselors and au pairs to share some of their thoughts on the cultural exchange experience. Let’s see what they had to say.
What is Global Awareness?
Global Awareness highlights the cross-cultural aspect of the exchange experience. The intention is to promote multi-cultural understanding and appreciation between the Au Pair in America community of host families, au pairs, and community counselors as well as with the communities in which the au pairs live. Especially important is the formation of positive first impressions of people from other cultures in young children.
Au Pair in America’s apairs support this notion when they visit classrooms (PK-6), local libraries, scouts, clubs. They can support existing curriculum or present age-appropriate materials aimed at enhancing multi-cultural knowledge. Au Pairs often present mini-language lessons to pre-school children, offering vocabulary, stories in other languages, and other fun activities highlighting either a specific language or a series of different languages during “reading hour” at local libraries.