• cultural diversity: the different beliefs, religions, languages, family heritage, socio-economic background, and ethnicities in a group
  • ethnicity: a societal grouping based on place of origin of a person and his or her ancestors
  • linguistic diversity: the many different home languages spoken in a group
  • race: a societal grouping based on physical and biological characteristics that people share


Before watching this video, read the text below. When instructed, watch the video from the beginning to end.

Early childhood educators play an important role in a young child’s life, not only by fostering developmental growth, but also by helping shape that child’s identity and character. A major focus of that character building is teaching children to respect others—to celebrate our similarities and differences and treat each other with kindness and fairness. This is not something an educator can effectively address in an isolated lesson. Rather, it should happen every day, minute-to-minute, day in and day out—by continually fostering children’s sense of self, helping children to recognize and honor our many differences (cultural, racial, ethnic, linguistic, and more), and developing an understanding of what it means to be fair and how unfairness hurts.

In this 45-minute, self-paced tutorial, you will explore best practices in honoring diversity. Three short videos will show seasoned educators using best practices in action. After watching each video, you’ll review and reflect on what you’ve seen and heard.

During this tutorial, you will:

  • Explore the best practices for creating a learning environment that honors diversity among children.
  • Discover ways to foster each child’s sense of individuality and sense of belonging to their classroom community.
  • Identify strategies for helping children understand how they are both alike and different from their peers.
  • Examine how to teach the concept of fairness in concrete ways.
  • Apply new knowledge to current practices.

First, do a self-assessment to discover what your strengths are and to identify specific skills you'd like to work on.

  1. Download and print the Self-Assessment (PDF).
  2. Complete the first half now, before you begin the training.
  3. Save the sheet with your answers. At the end of the training, you'll complete the second half, compare your "before" and "after" responses, and find out how far you've progressed.

Watch an overview of Honoring Diversity featuring Eleonora Villegas-Reimers, Associate Professor of Education at Wheelock College in Boston, Massachusetts.

Download and print the Learning Log (PDF). Use it during the tutorial to answer questions, reflect upon the materials presented, and jot down ideas and insights about how to apply what you have learned to your own learning environment.

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