It is with great pleasure that I am the host of this month’s Multicultural Kids Blogs Carnival. The theme this month is ‘Where do you come from?’ which can be a tricky question for lots of people to answer in this modern world. But as many brighter people than me have said, how can you know where you are going if you don’t know where you’ve been?
When I decided on this topic, I had no idea what sort of replies I would get, but I was sure there would be a wide variety. My own contribution comes at the end, along with two others, in a poem. I also had posts that are primarily photographic, posts that identify a particular place and others that are far more vague about a geographical home. Then there are others that see home in the languages they speak, or the mix of races and cultures that they come from.
But the first post, ‘Is “Where Are You From” A Relevant Question?‘ comes from Kampuchea Crossings and questions the who validity of the question in the first place, and some of the loaded assumptions that come with it.
Trilingual Mama provides a vivid description of her childhood in a Latin American family living in the USA. She then goes on to look out how the addition of a husband from yet another culture has affected her children. ‘Watered Down Hispanics‘ is a wonderful post with some brilliant family photos.
Family in Finland has a post from the eyes of her 4-year-old daughter about how she feels calling Finland her home for the last 4 months in ‘My Name Is Malika Afif-Watt. Where Am I From?‘ There are some great photos in this collection, often involving lots of snow!
(All around) The Americas
Rio de Janeiro is the home of the upcoming World Cup final and Olympics and has a reputation for being a wonderful and happy city. Although, as A Path of Light points out, in Happiness as Priority, being happy isn’t necessarily a good thing.
The Tiger Tales hails from another country famous for its happiness and music, but there is a lot more to Trinidad and Tobago than just ‘calypso, the steel pan and limbo’ as we find out in ‘#Sweet TnT: the country of my birth.’
Another story about a bewildering family tree comes from Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes. She embraces the questions, and the random guesses, from various people as a way to take in pride in who she is and pass this on to her son in ‘Are You Native American, Mexican or Indian?‘
(More or less) Europe
The European Mama has two answers to the question: a short one and a long one. The long answer is complicated, but much more interesting and offers insights into her identity and that or her family in ‘I’m From Europe. Where Are You From?‘
A post from Multilingual Parenting goes right to the heart of the matter by asking, and answering the question ‘Bilingual! Bicultural! Do You Know Where I Am Coming From?‘ In seeking to answer the question for herself, she shows how the answer can change quite dramatically over time.
Happy Muslim Mama has obviously done a lot of thinking on this very subject with three posts all dealing with her ideas: ‘Five Brothers from the Land of Five Rivers‘, ‘Identity, Language and Going Back Home‘ and finally ‘Roots and Branches – a British Punjabi Genealogy‘.
Ay yo, Be a Father still has a while to go before directly addressing the question of where his son comes from, but has already found that, with the help of reading, they are on the right lines in his post ‘Which Box Will He Check?‘
Instead of being from one particular place, one answer to the question might be that you come from every place, or in other words, you are a global citizen. All Done Monkey considers this possible answer and what implications it might have for children in ‘What Is a Global Citizen?‘
Expat Since Birth finds it impossible to say where, geographically, she is from. Instead, she finds it much easier to think about the languages she speaks and she wrote in her very first post called ‘My Home Are My Languages.’
An Irish Eco Dude In Brazil doesn’t give us any definite answers, but his evocative poem seems to suggest that is the ‘Journeys‘ we are on to find the answers that are as important as the answers themselves.
To almost finish we have two great minds which think alike because they have written poems inspired by George Ella Lyon. First of all is Mother Tongues Blog with ‘I Am From‘ and then my own version called ‘Where I’m From.‘
You can find much more information about Multicultural Kid Blogs, including past and present blogging carnivals by going to their site and having a mooch around. There are great articles on a variety of subjects, as well as what promises to be an excellent series of posts on the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Brazil and its effects on children.
And I leave you with a bit of Elvis Presley singing ‘Where Do You Come From?’