Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Reaching Black Students Harder for White Teachers in the Age of Trump | gadflyonthewallblog

Reaching Black Students Harder for White Teachers in the Age of Trump | gadflyonthewallblog:

Reaching Black Students Harder for White Teachers in the Age of Trump

Screen shot 2017-05-08 at 7.51.23 PM


“Not everything that can be faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed until it is faced.”
James Baldwin
“I have a great relationship with the blacks. I’ve always had a great relationship with the blacks.”
Donald Trump
Mariah’s eyes were wide as dinner plates.
She covered her mouth with her journal and pointed at the wipe board at the front of the room.
On it, I had written my question for the day. It’s how I usually begin class for my 8th grade students.
It read:
“Some movies and books like “To Kill a Mockingbird” describe what life was like in the South before the civil rights movement. To do so, they use the N-Word. Is it ever okay to us the N-Word? Why or why not? When might it be appropriate if at all? Why?”
I guess I’ve been teaching this for too long, because I didn’t expect Mariah’s reaction.
Not that was she alone. Several of my mostly impoverished and black students were looking around at each other in shock.
Kendra even said under her breath, “I don’t want to do this.”
We had just begun reading the novel yesterday. I thought it was time to address this issue before we were confronted with the word in the text.
In all of my classes that day, students had been interested in the query. But never had any of them reacted this way.
One student raised her hand and asked, “Which word are you talking about?”
I said, “I don’t want to say it, but it starts with an N and rhymes with trigger. Do you know what I’m getting at?”
They knew. Yet in removing doubt, I had only reinforced their outrage.
I thought maybe if they tried to write an answer first, it might help them organize their thoughts and maybe comprehend the point of the lesson. But they wouldn’t be Reaching Black Students Harder for White Teachers in the Age of Trump | gadflyonthewallblog:

LATEST NEWS AND COMMENT FROM EDUCATION

LATEST NEWS AND COMMENT FROM EDUCATION
EduBloggers

Latest News and Comment from Education