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  Case: I Wish I Were Black!
As a teacher of 5th grade students, I try to make sure that my students have a good sense of all the people and cultures that make up this country. Last couple weeks, I paid special attention to the African American people who have made significant contributions to the US. We read a book written by Walter Dean Myers. We have studied scientists, writers, and political figures. Students were very engaged and interested in the content. Yesterday something happened that puzzled me. Three of my White students told me that they wished they were Black. This was not my intention when I planned all my lessons on contributions of African Americans. How should I address this issue?
Solution: (Rates are posted for this solution!)
I have always thought it to be very interesting to have a "Black History Month". Don't get me wrong, I think this is a great idea, especially considering the hardships, struggles and challenges individuals of this race have endured to merely receive the freedom they deserve. However, I find it wrong that we devote a whole month to this one race, yet leave the others out. I believe this same notion applies to this situation here. While you are doing a wonderful thing--having students explore and delve into significant black contributors to our great nation, I believe you should treat the races equally. For instance, generate a list of all races and ask students to identify say, at least three, from each race. Then, spend time talking about each one. Spending too much time on one race can make students feel inadequate (or at least less adequate) and can put pressure on them to conform in order to achieve a similar goal.
The suggested solution is respectful of the individual (student) Yes
The suggested solution is relevant to the case Yes
The suggested solution is reasonable (easy) for the teacher to implement Yes
The suggested solution is likely to solve the problem/issue Yes
The suggested solution is original Yes
Comments: You make some great points here. Great ideas.
Rated On: October 16, 2014 6:38 pm
Rated By: Angela Avery