We recently came across the stunning Toy Stories photo series by Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti. The series documents children living all around the world surrounded by their favorite toys. In Texas a boy lines up his collection of plastic dinosaurs on his bedroom floor, while in Malawi a little girl stands watch over her only three toys—given to her by volunteers of a local NGO when she was born—in the small hut she shares with her parents.
While the photographs display obvious differences in living conditions for children in various developed and developing countries across the globe, it also serves to show that kids are still very similar the world over despite these socioeconomic and cultural differences. For instance, the little girl in Malawi’s favorite of her three toys is a plastic dinosaur figurine, and she likes it for the same reason that the little boy in Texas likes his own dinosaurs: because dinosaurs are protection.
Though some of the photographs come across as quite serious in tone, some or all of them could serve as a way to introduce our own children to the diversity of children’s experiences around the world. Wherever your family lives, your kids will likely be intrigued by seeing the way other kids around the world live and play. Other ways to do this—besides actual foreign travel—could include checking out the books Where Children Sleep by James Mollison and A Life Like Mine: How children live around the world.
We’d love to hear if and how you teach your little ones about the ways their counterparts around the world are living. Please tell us about any resources and experiences you’ve had in the comments section below!