Now that I'm raising three beautiful brown curly cuties, I make it a point to be very active in helping them build their self-confidence and to cultivate their appreciation for their natural beauty. I truly believe and follow the motto, "Lead by example." I can't expect words to be the only tool with which I teach. I have to show them.
Here are 5 tips that I've used to help my children love, embrace and appreciate the skin they’re in.
Lead by example
The best way I've learned to teach my children anything is by being a positive role model. I try my best to be the best me I can be so they can be the best them they can be. This includes loving and taking care of myself.Photo: Natural Hair Care for Children
Provide other positive role models
As an active member of the natural hair community, an educator and an author, I attend a lot of events. I bring my 9-year-old twins to 90 percent of the events I attend, which gives them the opportunity to watch, talk to and learn from other beautiful naturalistas. This has made a huge impact on their view of their natural hair. Instead of my twins viewing straight hair as holiday and special occasion hair, they view their afros as such. The bigger the afro, the better for them.Photo: Natural Hair Care for Children
Books, books and more books
I have a plethora of books about natural hair. My 9-year-old twins have full access to my books, and boy oh boy do they use them. They use them when they are practicing braiding and twisting their dolls hair and they read the books about children celebrating their natural hair. Find some kid-friendly books here.Photo: Natural Hair Care for Children
Refer to their hair and skin in positive ways
Remove any negative words about our hair and skin from your vocabulary. It can be very easy to accidentally have a slip of words, especially when you are frustrated. Many of us were raised hearing how 'nappy' and 'bad' our hair was and how our dark skin was not as pretty as light skin. Be very diligent in not allowing the past to resurface when dealing with your children. Use positive words to describe their natural attributes, and be genuine – they can sense the difference.Photo: Natural Hair Care for Children
Let them watch an episode of Soul Train
Yup the Soul Train. They might not appreciate the fashion, but they will appreciate seeing beautiful people of all shades with their afros and afro puffs dance down the soul train line.Photo: Natural Hair Care for Children
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