So I’ve tried to write this post about being a teacher and my reactions/response to Ferguson about 15 times. Each time I do, it just comes across wrong to me. So I’m going to try to really boil it down.

Things I do well:

  • finding diverse books especially books with characters that are of the same culture/race as my students
  • I stayed after school with a former student who is often categorized as an angry black kid (but has a lot to be angry about and is actually an awesome kid) when his ride didn’t show. I stood up for him. Latino Police Officer was a total jerk to him and made fun of him for not knowing his dad’s phone number.  I calmed the kid down and had him stand up for himself once he was calm.  Police officer looked pretty embarrassed when the kid said the reason why he didn’t know the number was because they kept getting the account cut off and new numbers so frequently (common with families that don’t have a lot of money).
  • Trying to learn Spanish and use it with my Spanish-speaking parents.
  • Writing letters to representatives on topics such as stand your ground and militarization of police 
  • Encouraging my admin to hire people of color
  • Respecting parents’ decisions to opt out of the sheriff program that finger prints children to make identification papers if the child ever goes missing

Things I could do better:

  • be more involved politically - more letters, phone calls, letters to the editor
  • be a better listener
  • read more on race-related topics
  • donate to organizations that support equal rights 
  • I do stand up to white people making racist comments, but I could be better prepared for when it happens… I mostly just see red and my heart starts beating really fast
  • expose students to people from their race in different professions ie: field trips, speakers, and books
  • stand against trends like an alarming rate of referrals for black boys within the scope of education
  • get more books reflecting Hatian culture or characters
  • attend protests

Questions I have as an educator (some are really just more frustrations than real questions):

  • In relation to the police, I teach pre-k.  We usually teach our students that police are there to help.  How do I continue to tell them that considering current events? I feel like a little bit of a liar.
  • As a white teacher of an entire class of students that are black or latino, what am I blind to that I should a) be aware of or b) be doing?
  • What can I do better in relation to my students’ parents?
  • What are the best ways to teach tolerance at a young age (we teach Conscious Discipline and the Hands are not for Hitting Series and I try to do it during teachable moments, but I feel like there could be more)

I’d love to hear your reactions as educators.  Anyone’s ideas or suggestions are also welcome.

My dream guy is based off of this portrayal of Gilbert Blythe.  Know anyone like that?

My dream guy is based off of this portrayal of Gilbert Blythe. Know anyone like that?

before you send someone an ugly message perhaps exfoliate your skin, set some life goals and contemplate why you’ve reached this point

American friends.

adventuresofastudentteacher:

May be a complete long-shot, but do any of you know any scouts or GirlGuiding leaders who would be interested in partnering up with a Glasgow, Scotland GirlGuiding unit?

This could take the guise of themed nights together, online discussions, and maybe a trip, depending on funding.

Boosting, because this sounds cool?

Well I am $444 poorer, but I am getting a new dish washer on Wednesday.

Tax was like $25 and I bought the 5 yr extended warranty (it was only $30 more than the 3 yr and you all know how my luck is).

jsadiqsfavpics:

sonofdust:

nolloresvato:

wakeupslaves:

Gandhi Spreads Racial Hatred of Africans

Gandhi was passionately prejudiced towards black Africans, as clearly displayed by his own writings over his 21-year stint in Gandhi’s writings during his 20 years in South Africa. He promoted racial hatred, in theory, and campaigned for racial segregation, in practice. In his newspaper, The Indian Opinion, he frequently wrote diatribes against the black community. Of particular concern to him was any contact between Indians and Africans. The following series of quotes, which is but a small selection of his extensive writings on the topic, documents Gandhi’s intense hatred for equal treatment of blacks and Indians, whether in culture or under the law. Indeed, his efforts to improve the status of the Indian community in South Africa were primarily focused on ensuring Africans were treated worse than Indians. His goal, thus was greater social inequality rather than universal equality.

All quotes taken from Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (CWMG).

Sept. 26, 1896: “Ours is one continual struggle against a degradation sought to be inflicted upon us by the Europeans, who desire to degrade us to the level of the raw Kaffir* whose occupation is hunting, and whose sole ambition is to collect a certain number of cattle to buy a wife with and, then, pass his life in indolence and nakedness.” — Vol. 1, p. 410

Sept. 24, 1903: “We believe as much in the purity of race as we think they do… We believe also that the white race of South Africa should be the predominating race.” — Vol. 3, p. 256

Feb. 15, 1904: “Under my suggestion, the Town Council must withdraw the Kaffirs from the Location. About this mixing of the Kaffirs with the Indians, I must confess I feel most strongly. I think it is very unfair to the Indian population.” — Vol. 3, p. 429

Sept. 5, 1905: “The decision to open the school for all Coloured children is unjust to the Indian community, and is a departure from the assurance given… that the school will be reserved for Indian children only.” — Vol. 4, p. 402

Sept. 2, 1907: “From these views expressed by a White we have a lesson to learn: We must encourage the Whites too. It is a short-sighted policy to employ, through sheer niggardliness, a Kaffir for washing work. If we keep in view the conditions in this country and patronize the Whites, whenever proper and necessary, then every such White will serve as an advertisement for the Indian trader.” — Vol. 6, p. 276

Feb. 29, 1908: “The British rulers take us to be so lowly and ignorant that they assume that, like the Kaffirs who can be pleased with toys and pins, we can also be fobbed off with trinkets.” — Vol. 8, p. 167

Mar. 7, 1908: “We were all prepared for hardships, but not quite for this experience. We could understand not being classed with the whites, but to be placed on the same level with the Natives seemed too much to put up with.” — Vol. 8, p. 198

Mar. 7, 1908: “Kaffirs are as a rule uncivilised – the convicts even more so…. The reader can easily imagine the plight of the poor Indian thrown into such company!” — Vol. 8, p. 199

Jan. 16, 1909: “I have, though, resolved in my mind on an agitation to ensure that Indian prisoners are not lodged with Kaffirs…. I observed with regret that some Indians were happy to sleep in the same room as the Kaffirs…. This is a matter of shame to us. We may entertain no aversion to Kaffirs, but we cannot ignore the fact that there is no common ground between them and us in the daily affairs of life.” — Vol. 9, p. 257

Jan. 23, 1909: “I acquainted the Governor with what had happened and told him there was urgent need for separate lavatories for Indians. I also told him that Indian prisoners should never be lodged with Kaffirs. The Governor immediately issued an order for a lavatory for Indians to be sent on from the Central Gaol. Thus, from the next day the difficulty about lavatories disappeared.” — Vol. 9, p. 270

June 5, 1909: “I received from General Smuts two books on religion, and I inferred from this that it was not under his orders that I had been subjected to hardships, but that it was the result of his negligence and that of others, as also a consequence of the fact that we are equated with the Kaffirs.” — Vol. 9, p. 355

Dec. 2, 1910: “Some Indians do have contacts with Kaffir women. I think such contacts are fraught with grave danger. Indians would do well to avoid them altogether.” — Vol. 10, p. 414

The term “Kaffir” is a pejorative South African term for black people which is equivalent to the ‘n’ word. Use of this term has been a criminal offense in South Africa since 1975. Despite always using it to describe black Africans, Gandhi was fully aware of the offensive nature of the word. This is demonstrated by Gandhi’s comment during a religious conflict in India, when he said: “If ‘Kaffir’ is a term of opprobrium, how much more so is Chandal?” [CWMG, Vol. 28, p. 62] “Chandal” is a racist term for low-caste Hindus.

Up to a couple years ago all I heard was the “good” side of Gandhi.. Good to know though

damn.

F too

This.  This is the info I struggle to recall when people buy home deco that says Be the change you want to see or get a tattoo of it (aka a certain relative).

lacigreen:

onemaytolerateaworldfullofdemons:

The only sort of pictures you should be reblogging of Jennifer Lawrence

have unfollowed 20+ blogs on here already and i will unfollow anyone else who reblogs nude photos taken NON-CONSENSUALLY from these women.  it is sexual violation (fueled by the objectification of women) and anybody who participates that is the literal scum of the earth

progressiveresistance:

builttobulk:

progressiveresistance:

¿Cual es tu sabor, café la llave? Vamos a saber pronto.

I don’t hablo the Mexican, but I imagine this says something like “coffee of lava” haha oh Me-hee-co.

I hate to disappoint you, but it’s Cuban, and “llave” means “key”.  Lava would be pretty badass, though LOL
Also, IT’S DELICIOUS!!!

Cuban coffee is the best.  Coworkers bought an espresso maker, and I brought in La LLava and the water.  Saves my life some days.

progressiveresistance:

builttobulk:

progressiveresistance:

¿Cual es tu sabor, café la llave? Vamos a saber pronto.

I don’t hablo the Mexican, but I imagine this says something like “coffee of lava” haha oh Me-hee-co.

I hate to disappoint you, but it’s Cuban, and “llave” means “key”.  Lava would be pretty badass, though LOL

Also, IT’S DELICIOUS!!!

Cuban coffee is the best. Coworkers bought an espresso maker, and I brought in La LLava and the water. Saves my life some days.

hisnamewasbeanni:

babeobaggins:

frankiemarx420:

Kelston Boys’ High School perform a massive haka in honour of the new Maori carving on campus

I live for this

And a chill went up the spine of every Australian high school rugby player.

possumtours:

This brick outside the WWII museum caught my eye. I decided to think about Eddie Simpson. I didn’t think I’d ever learn, but a few moments on the life of a forgotten serviceman, a faceless name, couldn’t hurt. I took a picture of the name, thought about it as I walked to the car, thought about him, Eddie Simpson, as I drove home. “There had to have been more than one Edward Simpson,” I thought.I googled the exact quote from the brick and found that a man, WIlliam Overstreet, who, in 1944, flew under the arches of the Eiffel tower to shoot down a German plane had died in December, 2013. William Overstreet. WBO.A few google searches with both names lead me to Eddie Simpson’s story. After walking away from the crash of his P-51 Mustang, Simpson died to save the lives of French Resistance fighters; men and women he barely knew and with whom he could not converse.  Read: The Stars and Stripes account of Eddie Simpson’s last day.I remember Eddie Simpson.

possumtours:

This brick outside the WWII museum caught my eye. I decided to think about Eddie Simpson. I didn’t think I’d ever learn, but a few moments on the life of a forgotten serviceman, a faceless name, couldn’t hurt. 

I took a picture of the name, thought about it as I walked to the car, thought about him, Eddie Simpson, as I drove home. “There had to have been more than one Edward Simpson,” I thought.

I googled the exact quote from the brick and found that a man, WIlliam Overstreet, who, in 1944, flew under the arches of the Eiffel tower to shoot down a German plane had died in December, 2013. William Overstreet. WBO.

A few google searches with both names lead me to Eddie Simpson’s story. After walking away from the crash of his P-51 Mustang, Simpson died to save the lives of French Resistance fighters; men and women he barely knew and with whom he could not converse.  

Read: The Stars and Stripes account of Eddie Simpson’s last day.

I remember Eddie Simpson.

Back to School, and to Widening Inequality

robertreich:

American kids are getting ready to head back to school. But the schools they’re heading back to differ dramatically by family income.

Which helps explain the growing achievement gap between lower and higher-income children.

Thirty years ago, the average gap on SAT-type tests between children of families in the richest 10 percent and bottom 10 percent was about 90 points on an 800-point scale. Today it’s 125 points.

The gap in the mathematical abilities of American kids, by income, is one of widest among the 65 countries participating in the Program for International Student Achievement.

On their reading skills, children from high-income families score 110 points higher, on average, than those from poor families. This is about the same disparity that exists between average test scores in the United States as a whole and Tunisia.

The achievement gap between poor kids and wealthy kids isn’t mainly about race. In fact, the racial achievement gap has been narrowing.

It’s a reflection of the nation’s widening gulf between poor and wealthy families. And also about how schools in poor and rich communities are financed, and the nation’s increasing residential segregation by income.

According to the Pew Research Center’s analysis of 2010 census tract and household income data, residential segregation by income has increased during the past three decades across the United States and in 27 of the nation’s 30 largest major metropolitan areas.

This matters, because a large portion of the money to support public schools comes from local property taxes. The federal government provides only about 14 percent of all funding, and the states provide 44 percent, on average. The rest, roughly 42 percent, is raised locally.

Most states do try to give more money to poor districts, but most states cut way back on their spending during the recession and haven’t nearly made up for the cutbacks.

Meanwhile, many of the nation’s local real estate markets remain weak, especially in lower-income communities. So local tax revenues are down.

As we segregate by income into different communities, schools in lower-income areas have fewer resources than ever.

The result is widening disparities in funding per pupil, to the direct disadvantage of poor kids.

The wealthiest highest-spending districts are now providing about twice as much funding per student as are the lowest-spending districts, according to a federal advisory commission report. In some states, such as California, the ratio is more than three to one.

What are called a “public schools” in many of America’s wealthy communities aren’t really “public” at all. In effect, they’re private schools, whose tuition is hidden away in the purchase price of upscale homes there, and in the corresponding property taxes.

Even where courts have requiring richer school districts to subsidize poorer ones, large inequalities remain.

Rather than pay extra taxes that would go to poorer districts, many parents in upscale communities have quietly shifted their financial support to tax-deductible “parent’s foundations” designed to enhance their own schools.

About 12 percent of the more than 14,000 school districts across America are funded in part by such foundations. They’re paying for everything from a new school auditorium (Bowie, Maryland) to a high-tech weather station and language-arts program (Newton, MA).

“Parents’ foundations,” observed the Wall Street Journal, “are visible evidence of parents’ efforts to reconnect their money to their kids.” And not, it should have been noted, to kids in another community, who are likely to be poorer.

As a result of all this, the United States is one of only three, out of 34 advanced nations surveyed by the OECD, whose schools serving higher-income children have more funding per pupil and lower student-teacher ratios than do schools serving poor students (the two others are Turkey and Israel).

Other advanced nations do it differently. Their national governments provide 54 percent of funding, on average, and local taxes account for less than half the portion they do in America. And they target a disproportionate share of national funding to poorer communities.

As Andreas Schleicher, who runs the OECD’s international education assessments, told the New York Times, “the vast majority of OECD countries either invest equally into every student or disproportionately more into disadvantaged students. The U.S. is one of the few countries doing the opposite.”

Money isn’t everything, obviously. But how can we pretend it doesn’t count? Money buys the most experienced teachers, less-crowded classrooms, high-quality teaching materials, and after-school programs.

Yet we seem to be doing everything except getting more money to the schools that most need it.

We’re requiring all schools meet high standards, requiring students to take more and more tests, and judging teachers by their students’ test scores.

But until we recognize we’re systematically hobbling schools serving disadvantaged kids, we’re unlikely to make much headway. 

Paging all art teachers:

christina-in-alaska:

I have never taught art before and only have an hour and ten minutes a week to do so this year. I’m teaching fifth grade to a group of kids who love art and want this time to engaging for them, but I have no idea where to start. Do you have any resources you can share to help me out? Google hasn’t been very helpful. Thanks for any help you can give!

Boost! msleahqueenhbic get on it!