| Program: || Kids' World, The Children's International Festival, Tulsa, OK |
| Contact(s): || Christina Smith Williams: (918) 596-7839 |
| Purpose: || To engage children in activities that encourage interest and respect for other cultures in a safe, friendly environment |
Tulsa Global Alliance was founded in 1976 to increase international opportunities, global awareness and multicultural understanding in Northeastern Oklahoma. In 1993, Tulsa Global Alliance created Kids' World, a festival aimed at providing quality multicultural education. The program was founded on the idea that children are not born with prejudices and that early exposure to various cultures will teach them the value of cultural diversity. Through interactive hands-on learning, children are empowered to participate in activities that promote racial and cultural tolerance.
The Kids' World Festival is a biennial event where many diverse ethnic groups, business and civic organizations participate as exhibitors. People are given the opportunity to learn about other cultures through food, entertainment, puppet shows, storytelling and an array of games. In the Kids' World Festival, children are allowed to learn in a fun environment, and school teachers are encouraged to integrate the Kids' World Curriculum, a multicultural teaching guide, into their class time before attending the field trip to Kids' World. The Kids' World Festival also encourages families to further explore their own culture, ancestry and identity, as well as allow kids an opportunity to develop their own perceptions about personal identity and the world around them.
Outcomes and Significant Accomplishments
In the five years since its debut, the Kids' World Festival has grown from 40 ethnic groups to over 100 represented in 1998. The program coordinators expect about 40,000 people at the 1998 festival. Students participating in the program said they learned a great deal about other cultures and enjoyed the learning environment.