Saturday, April 19, 2014

Empowering Education: Critical Teaching for Social Change


          For my final blog post I felt like a connections post would be appropriate just to tie everything together from all that we have learned over the semester. This article "Empowering Education: Critical Teaching for Social Change" by Ira Shor had similar thoughts to authors like Johnson and Kohn. The part that interested me the most was the many different aspects of participation in the classroom for students and teachers, and the relationships that form between students with other students and students with teachers. I can say for a fact that when we first started our service learning projects we were all worried about if the students were going to like us or not, and as time went on it got easier and now we don't want to leave. 

          Right from the beginning Shor references Bettelheim's perspective on whether kids should question why they have to go to school. He thought that socialization was the most import thing a teacher could teach a student, he also urged to teachers to encourage students to question their school experience. "A school year that begins by questioning school could be a remarkably democratic and critical learning experience for students" (Shor 1). This would build the trust between a teacher and their students. Johnson would say that this is great because they are talking about the issues of privilege, power and difference and as a result they create a more just and respectful world. 
          Some other writers that Shor references are Sapon-Shevin and Schniedewind who talk about the cognitive impact of competition that can go on in a classroom that the teacher has to facilitate in order for it to occur. For example star charts showing that certain students have mastered multiplying by 2's, or only having the work of the students who have neat handwriting and perfect papers hung up around the classroom. Kohn would say those are some "reasons to worry" because they only highlight the good kids in the class not the class as a whole, and in doing so it discourages those kids who don't have a star next to their name or their paper hung up. Kohn also believes that the climate, curriculum, and pedagogy issues contribute to engagement and learning within the classroom, much like Shor. 
          Just as a side note this quote reminded me of something we had talked about in class, "The authoritarian traditional curriculum itself generates bad feelings which leads many students to resist or sabotage the lessons" (24). This reminded me of when Dr. Bogad said that it is easier for a kid to see themselves as a behavioral problem than the "stupid" one in the class. I see this a lot in the classroom that I do my service learning in because if they aren't seeing their papers hung on the walls and the teacher always has to report them to the principal, they aren't going to have any confidence in their ability to do the school work, so they act out. 

          Shor was very informative in a way when he talks about participation being a very important part of a students experience in school. If a student doesn't share their opinions they will go unsaid and that will only hurt them in the long run. This article as a whole was very informative on what a productive classroom can be, it wrapped all of our articles that we have read over the semester into one. I have learned so much through these articles and it has been really fun creating this blog.

"Education is more than facts and skills. It is a socializing experience that helps the people who make society" (Shor 15).

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Citizenship in School: Reconceptualizing Down Syndrome


This week the article was "Citizenship in School: Reconceptualizing Down Syndrome" by Christopher Kliewer, and I decided to do an extended comments post on Jen's quotes/argument post this week. Jen mentioned some very meaning quotes that really got the main concept of the article.

          Her first quote was "We've got to learn to get along as individuals and as citizens" (pg. 74) I totally agree with what Jen says about how it's the way people react to people with Down syndrome or other disabilities. It takes a strong person who is grounded enough to see past the differences and to be able to not be phased by a child with disabilities, who as Jen says doesn't fit into the norm, and to treat them like any other child. Jen says it best that we as citizens need to learn to accept that people have differences and that those differences are something that needs to be embraced and accepted in a positive manner. I mean we all have something that we don't like about ourselves and I think that letting people know that they are beautiful and special can change the way they see themselves.

          Jen's second quote was "To eliminate a single person through any form of banishment, no matter how benevolent the logic, reduces the web and makes the community a less democratic and less rich place" (pg. 95). Kliewer's message behind this quote was that not accepting people for who they are doesn't just affect that one person it affects the whole community. Jen's example of "Tom" was really inspiring and I am glad that there are still good people in the world that would want to get up and join in the dancing and accept for who he is not what he has. My high school didn't integrate the special needs kids into regular ed. classrooms as much, but I do have some experience working with kids with down syndrome and other disabilities through an organization that I volunteer for called Special Olympics.

          The last quote that Jen used was "Educating all children together reconfigures the representation of Down Syndrome from burden toward citizenship" (pg. 95), I agree with Jen that Kliewer's message here is to voice that putting kids with disabilities in separate classrooms is bad. If we make the classrooms inclusive from the start there wouldn't be any stigma against them, making it easier for us to call them different. We have to weave them into our community web and treat them as one of our own for them to start thinking of themselves as one of our own.

          I also loved the video that Jen posted at the end of her post, it is so sweet and inspiring. GREAT JOB JEN!

          I just also wanted to mention the volunteer work that have done and currently doing with the Special Olympics organization in my town. We meet every Sunday and work with kids with all sorts of disabilities, I love doing it and I believe it has made me a better person and also made me want to pursue Special Education. I make sure that I am giving my 100% effort into every week because they are the one's who deserve the attention.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Literacy With an Attitude


This week I read "Literacy With an Attitude" by Patrick Finn. Not going to the lie the reading was long and it was hard for me to get into it, so I tried to look at other people's blogs to get some ideas. In the beginning Finn tells us what the whole premise of the book is going to be about. He says the whole book talks about savage inequalities, between the executive elite, affluent professional, middle class and working class, that are so subtle that the average parent, teacher or student wouldn't be able to notice them.

Then he begins chapter 2 by talking about Jean Anyon who had studied five fifth grade classrooms in public elementary schools in various types of neighborhoods. Her findings were that, "In the working class schools, knowledge was presented as fragmented facts isolated from wider bodies of meaning and from the lives and experiences of the students" (pg 10). Some other things within the working class that she saw were some of the teachers were only using bits and pieces of the textbooks because they felt some of the parts were too hard or weren't necessary. I believe that the teachers were being influenced by stereotypes of the working class and they never really gave them a chance to prove what they are capable of learning. A teacher actually said to Anyon "you can't teach these kids anything their parents don't care about them, and they're not interested" (pg. 12). I don't think it was right for that teacher to say that, but I can see why she would because the kids that I do my service learning with have parents that at times seem to not care about their kids. In the working class schools the dominant theme was resistance.

Comparing that to the middle class the express that knowledge "was less a matter of isolated facts and more a matter of gaining information and understanding from socially approved sources" (pg. 13). They wanted them to find answers to textbook questions rather than apply it to real life experiences. In the affluent schools the teachers emphasize creativity and personal development. They wanted them to think for themselves and to make sense of their own experiences. "Knowledge in the affluent professional school was viewed as being open to discover. It was used to make sense and thus it had personal value" (pg. 16). The teachers rarely gave direct orders which can relate to the opposite of Delpit, in the way that she says to explicitly teach the rules and codes of power. Lastly the executive elite professional school strived for excellence, knowledge to them is "academic, intellectual, and rigorous". The almost hierarchy systems of these public schools can connect to Johnson and how he says we must speak explicitly about the issues of privilege, power and difference. I believe that the higher you are in society the more likely you are to be given privileges, because some how some way people believe that they have earned them and that people of the working class don't deserve them.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Brown vs. Board of Education


I decided to take what I have heard in the Tim Wise videos and the New York Times article by Bob Herbert on "Separate but Unequal" and connect it to "In the Service of What", and "White Privilege Knapsack". Also touching upon the Supreme Court case of Brown vs. Board of Education and how Time Wise and Bob Herbert view it. 

          McIntosh suggests in her article "White Privilege Knapsack" that white people are taught not to recognize the way their race gets valued in the larger culture. She says that unless white people actively pay attention to it, whiteness will go unnoticed and unacknowledged. Tim Wise agrees with McIntosh by saying "If you want to know if a problem is still a problem it probably makes sense to talk to the ones who were the target of it not to the ones who don’t have to know" (3:45-3:55). Meaning if you want to know if there is still racism in the world don't ask the white people because they will say there is no racism. You have to ask the black people to get a true and honest answer because they are the targets of racism. Wise gives an example of asking an able bodied person if the transportation is appropriate for disabled people, well how would they know honestly. You again would have to ask the disabled people who are targets of the problem. These examples relate back to McIntosh ideas of white supremacy being an invisible system that white's (able bodied people) aren't always aware of. 
          One other article that I thought had a connection to this week's topic was "In the Service of What" by Joseph Kahne and Joel Westheimer.  A particular thing that this article talks about is charity versus change when you are doing volunteer work. [I give Jaclyn credit for this idea]. We all want to change the way racism is displayed in our school systems but will people only become involved because they want to look good or do they want to see a change for the future students who are growing up in this society. Bob Herbert says in his article that, "Everybody's in favor of helping poor black kids do better in school, but the consensus is that those efforts are best confined to the kids' own poor black neighborhoods" (¶ 13). He's saying yeah some white people want to help black kids get an education but are they doing it for the kids or are they doing it to be able to say they were the ones who helped get those black kids get their education.  
          Just to say a little about Brown vs. Board of Education it was enacted on May 17, 1954 declaring segregation in public schools as unconstitutional. This court case made it to the Supreme Court due to the involvement of lawyers, community activists, parents and students. It was a stepping stone in the right direction ultimately towards the Civil Rights Movement. One other well known Supreme Court case that was before this was the Plessy vs. Ferguson case that on May 18, 1896 enacted the separate but equal law. This stated that segregation was constitutional as long as the facilities and treatment were equal among the races. They then had Jim Crow laws that separated the two races with "white only" or "colored only" signs. From the outside looking in it was clearly not equal. 
          Bob Herbert says that the students who are poor will benefit more if you put them in a more affluent environment. He also states that the Supreme Court knew that in 1954 separate was not equal, "but our perpetual bad faith on matters of race keeps us trying" (¶14). I'm curious to see what people think that quote means because I don't exactly know myself. I also think that the issues that he raises in his article build upon the reasons why the Brown vs. Board of Education had to happen.

          Had it not been for Brown vs. Board of Education there might not have been a Little Rock, Rosa Parks or Martin Luther King Jr. maybe even no interracial marriage. So if all of this didn't happen I would not be here today and for that I am grateful. 

This link brings you to a site that talks about the Brown vs Board National Historic Site.

Friday, March 14, 2014

In the Service of What?


          I wanted to write a reflection this week because I felt like I could relate this article to our service learning project that we are currently doing. The article "In the Service of What? The Politics of Service Learning" by Joseph Kahne and Joel Westheimer had a few pressing points that I felt where important in regards to the topic of Service Learning. 
Kahne and Westheimer say that service learning can be seen as two different concepts charity or change. You can volunteer your time to charity by making Thanksgiving baskets for the homeless without any interaction with the homeless themselves. Versus making a change by volunteering in a classroom on a weekly basis and actually working with the kids and seeing them progress during the time your there. When you're working for charity you usually don't see for your self who actually needs those Thanksgiving baskets that you're making, thus creating a giving relationship. Versus when you are making a change, the relationship you are building has more of an impact on you life and theirs because you have to be apart of their life in order to understand their situation and help them.
          Service learning should definitely be made a requirement for all high schools because it gives you a well rounded outlook on life from multiple perspectives. During my four years of high school I performed over 500 community service hours, this was easy for me to do because I chose to do things that I would have fun doing while making a change. Some of the things I've done are Special Olympics, volunteering at an Art Literacy Camp in the summer at my old elementary school. With both of these organizations I have worked with children with and without special needs both were very rewarding and I feel like I have become a better person because of it. 
          This article obviously made me reflect on my service learning project for FNED, that I am performing in a first grade class at Pell Elementary in Newport. All I can say is these kids desperately need one on one attention through out the school day but it's usually just the teacher and I in the classroom when I am there. I'm only there in the morning from 8:30-10:30 and many days I have considered staying for the whole day just so that the teacher has someone else in the classroom with her, because a lot of the kids have severe behavioral issues and can't last five minutes with out antagonizing another kid, acting out or telling on one another. The thing is most of them are capable of doing the work they just have either problems going on at home that are carrying over into the classroom or their behavioral issues aren't being taken care of by social workers or there parents so the teacher has to handle it when they come to school. This disrupts the learning process making it difficult for them to move on from grade to grade if they aren't able to pay attention in school. Regardless I like to believe the service that I am performing is making a change in the students and as I have gotten to know them I've built relationships with them. 
This website describes the meaning of service learning and gives examples of some projects that have been done and some opportunities to perform such projects

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Unlearning the Myths That Bind Us


          This week we had to read "Unlearning the Myths That Bind Us" by Linda Christensen and I decided to make a hyperlinks post. The author raises the issue that children's movies and cartoons have had a negative effect on children. More specifically how children receive a "secret education" from the media, most won't admit that these movies and the media have manipulated us our whole lives. I like how Christensen involved students into her article and based it on what they thought as young adults growing up in a media driven world.
          An article titled Stereotypes in Disney mentions something called "disneyfication" its an idea of taking an environment and creating a fantasy world out of it by altering it and making it impossible for it to have any imperfections. They get this idea from the movies Disney has made where a fantasy world is created and it always ends with a happily ever after moment. We know what to expect when we watch disney movies and we turn to them for that happy feeling to put us in a good mood. There are real world places where we can get away from our problems and spend money, for example a shopping mall or restaurant. This article relates to the reading through its idea of "disneyfication", its the secret education that we get from these movies that make us want to "disney-fy" every situation.    
          I was born in 1995 around the time where Pocahontas, Hercules, Mulan, and Tarzan came out and I am not ashamed to say I have watched all of them on repeat, plus more (when I was younger). I like how Disney is coming out with movies that have defied the stereotypes that previous movies have set in place, for example "The Princess and the Frog" has a black princess and "Frozen" stars two sisters who display intelligence and courage all on their own. I found an article that talks about "Frozen" and its revolutionary ways called, Advance Perspective: Disney's Frozen Defies Expectations.
          One other movie that people might not know about is Cinderella staring Brandy Norwood as the lead, Whitney Houston as the fairy godmother and Whoopi Goldberg as the Queen. I loved this movie when I was a kid, it came out in 1997 and it follows the same story line as a regular Cinderella story but with a few alterations. As a young black girl growing up in a predominately white town this movie made me feel like I had a chance too, that I was not counted out of getting a happy ending just because of the color of my skin. Although this movie was the opposite of the stereotypical Cinderella it still had its traditional happily ever after.

This is the full movie of the (black) version of Cinderella from 1997 played by Brandy also staring Whitney Houston and Whoopi Goldberg. I didn't know if you all knew this existed so I thought I would share it. 

Since it's Oscar Sunday I thought this picture was appropriate

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Safe Spaces


        These authors Annemarie Caccaro, Gerri August, and Megan S. Kennedy argue that the LGBT community should be welcomed at schools. Through out the article they give examples of how teachers handled the topic of LGBT kids. In the beginning of the article they talk about the classroom and what it should represent. They say it is a place where common interests and individual differences coexist, also where differences are explored, expected and embraced. I could not agree more, I think teachers are still working on the appropriate way to talk about LGBT because it has become more and more common in America. 


        One part of the article that I thought was interesting is when they say that "If our homes are incubators, keeping our children safe as they grow into the patterns of family life, schools are 'outcubators' -- places that introduce new ways of thinking and behaving"(pg 84). To think that you are kind of sheltered from everything that is not your family and then you go out in the world and see a black kid for the first time, or a LGBT kid for the first time. It must peak your interest, but you have to be aware that they are there for the same reasons you are, to learn. 

        The curriculum that some schools have are half the problem, they portray negative representations of LGBT people. For example in some health or biology classes they might relate HIV/AIDS as a disease of gays. Or when learning about families in elementary school they talk about single-parent families, adoptive families, divorced families, and foster families but not families that have two moms with children or two dads and their adopted daughter they just don't make the curricular cut. History classes essentially erase any influence moments from the past that have to do with LGBT, which isn't fair at all because they talk about everything that has to do with topics like civil rights and women's suffrage. 

        One of the stories they told was about a girl named Maria a sophomore in college and an "out" lesbian, she liked her Spanish class and her Spanish teacher. She had answered a question on a test that asked 'do you have a sweetheart?' she wrote 'yes, I have a girlfriend' the teacher marked the question wrong and said it should be boyfriend not girlfriend. she then asked what should she do about this, should she explain to the teacher her situation and ask to change to grade, should she just let it go. Maria was tired and disappointed that as a young lesbian the teacher's red pen had just erased her identity all together. 

        The authors also talk about the idea of mirrors and windows in schools, "our classrooms need to be 'mirrors and windows' for all students-- mirrors in which youth see themselves in the curriculum and recognize their place in the group; windows through which youth see beyond themselves to experiences connected with, but not identical to, their own" (pg 88). It is important for students to feel like they belong especially at a young age where it will effect them the most. 

        “She [Megan Boler] suggests that to make up for years of invisibility, classrooms should over-represent the experiences of those who have been excluded or erased from history.” (page 92). I found this statement to be possible but within reason. I think that having a day of silence or a week during school where you celebrate the LGBT community, is completely fine. But not to all of a sudden decide that the curriculum should be all about LGBT and not about anything else. I think that would do more damage than not talking about it at all. 

“Good intentions are not enough; trying to see all students as the same is not enough. Being a fair-minded individual is not enough.” (pg 98)

Overall I think the argument of what is the appropriate way to make LGBT and inclusive part in elementary, secondary and high school classrooms is still a work in progress. 

This is a clip of Disney Channel introducing their first on-air gay couple on the show Good Luck Charlie. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Social Justice Event Reflection


         On February 12th I attended a showing of the documentary Good Hair produced by Chris Rock who is a very popular comedian. He traveled all around the world from LA to India learning and researching all about the hair that is on a black woman’s head. He started in Atlanta and did a number of interviews with celebrities like Raven Symone, Nia Long, Ice-T, Maya Angelou, Reverend Al Sharpton, Meagan Good and many more. He also went into local hair salons and barber shops to ask the black community what their thoughts were on the subject of hair and what classifies it as “good”. 
         Well, you all know that I am half black and half white so my hair is not as course as a full black woman’s hair would be. I have put relaxers in my hair on a regular basis since I was about eight years old until I was twelve and then at fourteen years old I had a keratin treatment done. From then until now I haven’t put any chemicals in my hair besides straightening it with a flat iron every once and a while. I like the way I look with straight hair rather than my natural hair because it looks cleaner and nicer. Black women essentially got the look from the western European women and wanted to look the same way. So we put relaxers that have sodium hydroxide on our roots, some even have their daughters start at three years old and once you get it done the first time it’s almost impossible to stop because you’re addicted to the results it gives. There is a possibility of harm that comes with relaxing your hair because it containing a harsh chemical called sodium hydroxide which could give you extreme chemical burns if left in too long.

Raven Symone
        Then there is the alternative of the weave which is a hairstyle created by weaving pieces of real or artificial hair into a person’s existing hair, typically to increase the length or thickness. These weaves cost upwards from $1000-$5000 depending on the quality of hair that you want to use. The sad part is some women will pay to get their hair done every month rather than put food on the table for their family. Most of the hair comes from India were men and women think they are sacrificing their hair to their God but in reality it is getting shipped all over the world, mostly to the US, to be used for weaves. The most ironic part about this whole thing is that African Americans are the ones who buy these products the most but the Asian population dominate the manufacturing and marketing of this hair empire.

Meagan Good
        This whole movie essentially takes you through what a black woman has to do to be accepted and taken seriously in this world, when it comes to their hair. They have to compete against the built in privileges that white people have. For example Peggy McIntosh says in her article “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack” that she is very likely to walk into a hairdresser's shop and find someone who can deal with her hair, because she is white and has white privileges. Well I can attest to that because I am mixed race and I haven't had the best luck with my hair. I have tried every type of shampoo and conditioner and almost every type of hair treatment to make it look somewhat presentable and manageable. I do feel that because of my race I have to search for the right hair treatments and products whereas if I was white it would be much simpler to pick the first thing on the shelf and to find someone that knows how to take care of it.

        Another article that I read in class was “Silenced Dialogue: Power and Pedagogy in Educating Other People’s Children” by Lisa Delpit. This article was about the “culture of power” and how people with power are least likely to know that they have it and people without power most likely know they don’t have it. People with power have money and that money can pay for the hair on their heads, for example. So people with power have the luxury of getting their hair down whenever they want, whereas people who can’t afford it may not be able to get the job they interviewed for that day because their natural hair doesn’t look sophisticated enough for the interviewer to take them seriously even if they are the most qualified for the job. It’s kind of like how some of us went to our service learning projects and came back and we thought we were over dressed but it did give us an upper hand at the time.

Chris Rock and family
        One other article that we read in class was “Aria” by Richard Rodriguez. This article was mostly about how when Richard had to learn English to be more American he lost his “private individuality” or his Spanish speaking roots. The lesson behind this article was in order to gain a public individuality you may have to lose your private one. This applies to what the movie was about too, because black women feel like they have to have straight hair to be taken seriously in America today, and having straight hair is valued more than curly, nappy, natural African hair. Since most people know that it is possible for them to straighten their hair, when they see someone with their natural hair they question why. Why would you want to look that way, or they must not have the money. It’s those assumptions that can apply to so many other topics in society.
These two videos are of Chris Rock, Nia Long and Raven Symone answering some questions about the movie and some clips from the movie.

I also found this Huffington Post article about a very controversial topic in the black community.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Check it out!

Hey everyone I found this while scrolling through my Facebook and I thought it had a lot to with what we are talking about in class. I don't mean to offend anyone, I just thought it was a great connection.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Aria by Richard Rodriguez


"But I couldn't believe that the English language was mine to use. (In part, I did not want to believe it.)" (1)

Richard tells us about how Spanish is his first language and that he now had to learn English. He refers to Spanish as a private language and English as a public language. He was reluctant to learn English at first because he knew it would change his life and his family. His parents only spoke Spanish and they pushed their kids to learn English so that they would do better in school, this slowly distanced the family apart. He knew that if he started speaking English more than Spanish then he would be driving a wedge between himself and his parents, and he didn't want that. So partly he didn't want to be allowed to speak English because in time he figured out that he would loose his essence as a Spanish speaker. 

"The family's quiet was partly due to the fact that, as we children learned more and more English, we shared fewer and fewer words with our parents."(4)

This quote portrays the down side to Richard and his siblings learning English. It essentially broke the relationship that he had with his parents because they knew very little English and they wanted their kids to be able to learn in school. All a parent wants to do is ask their kids "how was your day at school?" and they couldn't. He talks about how the nuns came to his house and talked to his parents about the little progress that the kids were making in learning English at school. The nuns asked if they could encourage them to speak English at home and of course they agreed to it, and Richard saw this as them giving away the sounds that held their family together. The nuns even changed his name to Richard instead of Ricardo, I find that crazy that someone, even a nun, thinks they have the authority to modify a person's name. Their name is what gives them their identity and they think they can just not call them it to make it easier on you to pronounce. 

"I heard several Spanish-speaking nuns-their busy, singsong overlapping voices-assure us that-yes, yes, we were remembered, all our family was remembered in their prayers."(5)

He talks about three instances were he saw signs of hope that Spanish speakers were still around, and they served as memories of what his family used to be like before speaking English. In this instance he was with his mother at a convent and he saw the shadows of these nuns who were speaking Spanish. While listening to their sounds, he felt that his old life wasn't gone forever and this reassured him that his family was going to be okay. This instance showed that as long as he hears Spanish every once and a while out in the public, I think he will be able to accept the English language as his own. 

"So they do not realize that while one suffers a diminished sense of private individuality by becoming assimilated into public society, such assimilation makes possible the achievement of public individuality."(6)

During this entire article Richard expresses the differences between someone's private and public individuality. He saw private as his life at home with his parents and the public was the outside (English speaking) world. In this quote Richard is talking about how society strived to conform anyone who didn't speak English. So when his parents made him speak English at home it diminished his sense of "private individuality" in a place where he thought he was safe from the outside world trying to affect him. 

Monday, February 10, 2014

Silenced Dialogue

This article by Lisa Delpit was a little bit harder for me to interpret. One of the main concepts in the article that i found interesting was how black students interact with white teachers versus black teachers. I selected these quotes because I thought they supported the white teachers versus black teachers idea and which students learn best from each type of teacher.

"I am also suggesting that appropriate education for poor children and children of color can only be devised in consultation with adults who share their culture. Black parents, teachers of color, and members of poor communities must be allowed to participate fully in the discussion of what kind of instruction is in their children's best interest. Good liberal intentions are not enough." (page 45)

Delpit voices her opinion that the parents of the children who are poor or children of color should come together and decide what is the best way for them to learn. Instead of the people who know nothing about their lifestyles because they most likely don't know what their life is like at home. I think that its a good idea for the white teachers to consult the black teachers because they are the ones who would know more about what an average black students life is like. 

I personally saw this first hand when I was volunteering in the classroom that I do my service learning project in. My teacher is a very short white lady and she was speaking in a different tone than I had ever heard a teacher talk in. But I noticed it was to the black children, granted they were not doing what they were supposed to be doing. She would give them direct orders in an almost yelling tone and they would do it, I knew that they wouldn't go home and tell their parents that their teacher yelled at them because that was probably how their parents speak to them on a daily basis.

“Several black teachers have said to me recently that as much as they'd like to believe otherwise, they cannot help but conclude that many of the "progressive" educational strategies imposed by liberals upon black and poor children could only be based on a desire to ensure that the liberals' children get sole access to the dwindling pool of American jobs.” (page 29)

This quote supports the fact that the white liberals only want whats best for their children not the children of the other races. I see this as white supremacy a little bit because the white people are in charge of most of the school systems so they naturally would hire white teachers who then don't know how to handle students of other races making it difficult for the students to get an education which they need to get a reasonable job.

This article I found raises the question of whether a student learns more from a teacher of his/her own ethnicity.


This was from 2004

Sunday, February 2, 2014

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

Peggy McIntosh

The article I read is "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack" by Peggy McIntosh who argues that the white population are instilled with an automatic set of privileges when they are born into the white community. Whereas the non-whites have to face all sorts of racism and challenges on a daily basis.

I personally am half African American and half Caucasian, so my life has been a little bit of both worlds you could say. To the general public I look like a black girl, but I grew up in a predominately white town and went to a predominately white high school so I have white friends and have been raised in a white community. Although this is where I am conflicted, I don't see why I am not entitled to white privileges because sometimes I see myself as white but I forget that I look black. So being mixed race has it's pros and cons, my siblings and I wouldn't even be alive if my parents didn't fight for what they believed in.

McIntosh says in the article that she is very likely to walk into a hairdresser's shop and find someone who can deal with her hair, because she is white and has white privileges. Well I can attest to that because since I am mixed race I haven't had the best luck with my hair. I have tried every type of shampoo and conditioner and almost every type of hair treatment to make it look somewhat presentable and manageable. I do feel that because of my race I have to search for the right hair treatments and products whereas if I was white it would be much simpler.

This site has some more white privileges like the ones McIntosh wrote in her article...

First Blog Post!!

Hey everyone my name is Mariah Caldwell and I'm a freshman at RIC majoring in Elementary Education with a content in Special Education. I commute about 45 minutes to RIC Monday through Thursday the drive can be long some days but its bearable. I'm a middle child with a younger sister and an older brother. I love to play basketball, recently I played in a alumni scrimmage against my old high school varsity team and it felt like I was playing in high school all over again. Over the summer I ran a few camps, one was a basketball camp and the other was an Art Literacy Camp at my local elementary school, they work on bridging what the kids learned from the previous year into the upcoming school year. I also hung out with some friends and enjoyed not having summer work for once in the past four years. I took this course mostly because I had to but now I am realizing that it will be a very useful course for my major. As for outside of class I do homework and watch Netflix, nothing to exciting. I am also going to be starting a new season of volunteering with Special Olympics in my town, we work on improving kids who have special needs with their motor skills and social skills. I've seen these kids grow and it has influenced my career path in a positive way. I am looking forward to continuing this course and my Service Learning Project.