Addressing Racism Within The Four Walls Of My Classroom — And Yours

           According to Teaching Tolerance,”The dialogue about race should start in the classroom — the teacher-prep classroom, that is.   Teachers should be exploring multiculturalism and discussing  ways to honor diversity in their future classroom?

How are we going to teach our students about the current state of Charlottesville and Racism within the classroom?     Looking at some of the images from the incidence on Racism would be a great way to get conversation going on in the classroom.  Hearing the students point of view is a great thing and doing quick writes on some of these images will get their opinions out in the open.  Since the type of activities we are doing are open ended, what is the limit to the discussions? Depending on the grade you teach, parents might think their children are to young to discuss this topic in the classroom.  Since we as teachers should discuss this very important topic, How can we discuss this with the younger population in schools?  The best way to attack this is to talk about community with the younger kids and how people in multi-racial communities can get along with one another.

        We do our children and ourselves a disservice when we don’t have these difficult conversations as a part of our collective curriculum; however, many teachers from various walks of life are neither well-versed nor fully comfortable discussing race on any level with their students. Not talking about racism won’t make it go away. If anything, not talking about racism in the classroom further perpetuates racist ideologies that are, at their root, born out of ignorance. Education’s goal is to dispel ignorance and replace it with truthful knowledge.  With that being said, just how many teachers feel equipped to facilitate lessons that touch heavily upon race in the classroom? Not nearly enough.

.In the blog , “Addressing Racism Within The Four Walls Of My Classroom — And Yours”  An analysis of race in America is exactly what needs to happen.  Furthermore, it can’t just be teachers of color solely facilitating such lessons in their classrooms.  I don’t want to write about the events going on in Virginia. I don’t want to think about it. I’m so tired of the hatred and I long for peace, but I can’t very well in good conscious remain silent. That would be akin to protesting with those hate-mongers in Virginia this weekend.  I can’t just write about back-to-school shopping, lesson planning, and business-as-usual.  I feel we need to discuss Virginia people being murdered by racist peoples.

We all need to think about,  the children of Virginia and how safe they are? But, Are our children anywhere safe given the outpouring of racist rhetoric being spewed from the White House in DC to the outhouses of VA and all over the U.S.? What can we do to make a difference within the hearts and minds of the children whom we teach? If education is our best vehicle for bringing about change — which it is –how can we include the lessons we teach with critical thinking and analysis about racism in the United States for the elementary school students entrusted in my care? How are other educators planning to address these events with their students at every grade-level? The article posed these questions to all who are reading. Whether you are a teacher or some kind of educator, or parent, I would want you to think about how can you discuss this with your child or student?

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