Somewhere Under the Rainbow…

 

Fostering and nurturing acceptance in a child is one of the biggest gifts we can give our children. The world is incredibly globalized, and children will cross paths with an individual who is different in one way or another. People from diverse backgrounds can be found in every job field, and a child that is unable to accept differences in others will suffer in the future.

This week, #ptcamp is engaging in colorful conversations about diversity based on the book, Beyond the Bake Sale. Several Voxers in the group have expressed concern about their lack of diversity among race, ethnicity and culture. We understand the importance of teaching acceptance, but how do we teach it in our schools if they are primarily one race?

Here are several brilliant ideas that have been expressed this week:

  •  Joy shared that we should tap into our HS graduates that have attended college.  Invite them back to elementary schools to share what they wish they were taught about diversity.
  • Geniene suggested tapping into children’s own history, going back a couple of generations to see how different they are from their roots.
  • Becky suggested using the term “Different Abilities” rather than “Disabilities”. (Love this!)
  • Several voxers mentioned different levels of diversity instead of simply thinking about race and culture… (socioeconomic, academic, sexual orientation)

My biggest takeaway thus far from my week from the Beyond the Bake Sale discussion:

Embrace your families and commit to building meaningful, authentic relationships with them everyday.

How do you embrace diversity in your home, school, and life?

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6 thoughts on “Somewhere Under the Rainbow…

  1. Great ideas that you shared from the group. I especially like the first one regarding asking recent graduates what they wished they knew. I know that when I learn it’s always helpful to hear from someone’s first hand point of view!

  2. That sounds like a thought-provoking book! All of my staff attended a 2-day Beyond Diversity training last year that caused me to reflect on many of my practices. In addition, the #weneeddiversebooks campaign inspired me to spend an afternoon with my students combing through all of our classroom books for those with diverse characters. It was pretty eye-opening and led to a great courageous conversation. Although we focused on culture, after reading your post, it would be interesting to do the activity again, but include different levels (including different abilities). Thanks.

    1. Sandy, I think it’s fantastic that you included your students in the process of examining your books for diversity. It’s shocking how little diversity there is sometimes in our schools’ libraries. All students need to be able to identify with characters/people in books and it’s our responsibility to ensure those books are readily available. Would love to be a part of your staff 🙂 Thank you for reading and contributing.

  3. After my 5th graders (from a predominantly white, suburban school) first did Mystery Skype (with a very multi-cultural urban school), a student commented on how different the class we connected with looked. It led to a good discussion about diversity.

    1. I am so glad you mentioned Skype. That’s exactly what I suggested too. It’s a great way to view the world and works especially well with schools like yours. Wish I could’ve heard that rich discussion. Thank you for reading and reminding us of the importance of Skype in the classroom.

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