I was honored tonight to see the parents flow into the community center in Balkipapan, Indonesia. They were all there to try and get a better understanding on how to support, nurture and help their expat child grow.
Here is the presentation we went through:
By “A boy named Jack”
I am a third cultural kid. In my 8th grade humanities we needed to bring in an object that reflected our “culture”. This posed several concerns for me. First, we had just arrived in Thailand from a move from Africa so what sort of cultural things might I find in my backpack since our shipment had not yet arrived in our new home. This did not seem very promising. Second, what culture do I represent?
I decided to sit down and do a time line on my life to see if it might help direct me into finding just the right item to take into class. I decided to map my time line by months so it would reflect my summers in the USA.
The end results did not help narrow down my search for the idea culture object. I am 4% Australian, 25% African, 25% American and 45% Indonesian. Of course, I am 1% Thai since this is now my home country. I do carry an American passport but that is such a small part of my actual 13 years.
I finally had the perfect object for class. My object was a cardboard box. This box can hold your items when you are moving from place to place. I am a third culture kid, so I have moved a lot, this makes cardboard moving boxes a commonly used item for people like me. Most Third Culture kids have lived in other countries longer than their passport country. The packing box reflects the life of a moving family.
I hope my teacher will acknowledge this unique culture. If not, I have just blown my first grade in a new class in a new school. Being a third cultural kid makes you brave.
Ruth Van Reken – Expert and founding father of Global Nomads
Rebecca Grappo – Education consultant
FIGT: Families in Global Transitions
Search Institute: Assets – Checklist of questions to build resilience
Panel discussion at the USA State Dept. 2012 – TCK’s
Exit Interview – Leaving one international school by Julia Simens
Prezi – additional presentation by Julia Simens go to Prezi.com and search for Julia Simens or Kjjgsimens