MotherTongues: Wear Words, Celebrate Cultures

about words, languages, cultures, travel

5 reasons why I travel with my kids June 18, 2013

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Exploring in Mexico

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~ Mark Twain

As I’ve said before, I love to travel. And I love to share this love of traveling with my family. We try different foods, we try learning new words, we learn about another culture. Here are 5 reasons why I love to travel with my kids:

1. When traveling in a country where the dominant language is not English, the kids soak up the language around them. This happens every time we visit South Africa – their Afrikaans improves within a week! – or when we visit a Spanish speaking country. Traveling helps them to see WHY we try hard to be a multilingual family.

2. Traveling reinforces the lesson that not everyone looks the same, eats the same food, believes the same, or enjoys the same sport. Wade Davis said: “The world in which you were born is just one model of reality. Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you: they are unique manifestations of the human spirit.”

3. Whenever we can spend a little longer time in another country, the girls make friends from all over the world. Instant pen pals!

4. Our kids are much more likely to try new foods when traveling than they would at home. I think travel opens up your senses and makes you more adventurous.

5. And lastly: I see the world differently through the eyes of my kids. What a priceless experience!

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