How do you develop a cultural awareness amongst students?

The world is changing and the planet on which we live now seems a much smaller place than it was a Decade ago. With greater work mobility and more migration, families are prepared to travel to make the most of a more favourable climate, working conditions and education opportunities if it means they will be happier, healthier and financially better off.

Children are now finding themselves learning alongside different faiths, cultures and nationalities in the classroom. This means they need to be more agile, aware and respectful of those around them despite their differences.

Schools must develop an intercultural understanding in their students as it’s an essential part of living and working in the 21st Century. Why? It helps them to act as responsible local and global citizens, and ensures that they are well equipped (through their education) for life in a multi-cultural society and world.

The Australian Curriculum

There are many that believe the Australian Curriculum helps students to develop a deeper intercultural understanding as it challenges their personal values and beliefs, alongside those of others. For this reason, schools like AISPP have become a popular choice amongst the expat and local community in Phnom Penh.

The Australian Curriculum makes a connection with their world – and the world of others

The focus is on shared interests and values, a better understanding of cultural perspectives and practices, and a common exploring of interests. The Curriculum cultivates values like curiosity, care, empathy, reciprocity, respect and responsibility, along with an open-mindedness. These all help to promote a very positive view of intercultural issues, but also encourage students to consider their own beliefs and attitudes.

To have no intercultural understanding is to limit a child’s ability to communicate, to get on and to develop the skills and personal qualities required to do well in life and work.

Intercultural understanding is more apparent in some learning areas within the Australian Curriculum than others. It is particularly evident when exploring modules concerned with people and their societies, relationships and interactions, and with the cross-curriculum priorities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures, Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia, and Sustainability. It’s also promoted across Language Development, The Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, History, Geography, Civics and Citizenship, Maths and English – in fact across all subjects taught at AISPP.

AISPP, an Australian Co-ed IB International K-12 school (Phnom Penh), is fast becoming one of the Kingdom of Cambodia’s leading education providers. Providing a modern Australian private and independent education, its 21st Century philosophy, state-of-the-art facilities and world-class teaching standards, make it ideally placed to prepare children for the global challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. Talk to us on t: +855 92 111 136 or email: info@aispp.edu.kh