May 01, 2015 01:00 PM

Raising her sons in Spain is having a positive influence on Shakira‘s parenting skills.

In a new interview with Parents Latina magazine‘s spring issue, the singer — and mom to Sasha, 3 months, and Milan, 2 — admits the country’s approach to parenthood has shaped her own strategies.

“In Spain, parents speak to their children as equals and I feel that the children respond in return,” she explains, adding that she primarily speaks to her own boys in Spanish.

But Shakira, 38, says there’s plenty of positives about each of the social environments she’s been exposed to, including her birth country of Colombia and the United States.

“In all three cultures, parents are attentive to their children,” she notes. “Their dad [Gerard Piqué] and I both grew up in very close-knit families and that has made us openly affectionate parents.”

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However, Shakira’s not going completely old-school when it comes to her household. When asked how she’s ensuring her sons steer clear of the machismo stereotype, she says, “Growing up with a working mom is a start.”

She continues, “I also think their dad is a good example of a modern man to emulate. Gerard and I pretty much share all parenting responsibilities, although I’m definitely the disciplinarian.”

AKM-GSI

— Anya Leon

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