Read more about the project here: itooamharvard.tumblr.com
Oh how I love this! I have seen the original exercise many times, however, PBS’s Frontline produced an amazing five part series you won’t want to miss!
Jane Elliott’s – Blue Eyes/Brown Eyes Exercise – “A CLASS DIVIDED”
This is one of the most requested programs in FRONTLINE’s history. It is about an Iowa schoolteacher who, the day after Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered in 1968, gave her third-grade students a first-hand experience in the meaning of discrimination. This is the story of what she taught the children, and the impact that lesson had on their lives.
Watch the five part series:
Jane Elliott is still around doing amazing work, check her out!
Your Friends at iCelebrateDiversity.com
“racism is not an opinion…it is an offense.”
Your Friends at iCelebrateDiversity.com
This will be my last poem from Arnold Adoff’s book “All the Colors of the Race” that I featured a couple of days ago. There are many more great poems in the book–buy it or check it out from your local library!
We are talking about
by Arnold Adoff
We are talking about
the ones who pick their friends
because of how black they act
because of how white they can
Sometimes blackness seems too black for me,
and whiteness is too sickly pale;
and I wish every
one were golden from
Golden from the
In this activity, you will see how race and ethnicity are reflected in census catagories across the globe. What race would you be somewhere else? What type of affect would it have on you in that country? Very interesting to think about!
We are winding down our highlights from the exhibit “Race: Are we so different?”. If you have missed any, you can catch up here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 and Part 5. To learn more about this exhibit visit Understanding Race.
Here’s another great poem from Arnold Adoff that was in the book All the Colors of the Race that I featured yesterday.
On my applications
by Arnold Adoff
On my applications I can
runner in the middle distance races,
is willing to help you
if you take her as she
Here is a tiny treasure that I found in the library this summer. A book of poems, All the Colors of the Race, written by Arnold Adoff. Based on his own interracial family, Adoff writes from the perspective of his biracial (black/white) daughter, which I find very interesting. At first I was a bit thrown off because I generally prefer poetry to rhyme, however, his style is considered “free verse” poetry. The more I read (and re-read) them, the more I fall in love with them! I hope you do too.
The lady said
by Arnold Adoff
The lady said: what are you going to
when you grow
all the way up?
And I said: a woman.
And she said. No. I mean what are
And I said: a girl.
And she said: No. I mean what do you call
And I said: Honey. Baby. Sweet
If she finds it hard,
I find it easy
to make it hard for her.
The Cold Within
by James Patrick Kinney
Six humans trapped by happenstance
in black and bitter cold
Each possessed a stick of wood,
Or so the story’s told.
Their dying fire in need of logs,
the first woman held hers back
For on the faces around the fire
She noticed one was black.
The next man looking ‘cross the way
Saw one not of his church
And couldn’t bring himself to give
The fire his stick of birch.
The third one sat in tattered clothes
He gave his coat a hitch,
Why should his log be put to use
To warm the idle rich?
The rich man just sat back and thought
Of the wealth he had in store,
And how to keep what he had earned
From the lazy, shiftless poor.
The black man’s face bespoke revenge
As the fire passed from his sight,
For all he saw in his stick of wood
Was a chance to spite the white.
And the last man of this forlorn group
Did naught except for gain,
Giving only to those who gave
Was how he played the game.
The logs held tight in death’s stilled hands
Was proof of human sin,
They didn’t die from the cold without,
They died from the cold within.
This quiz made me think of the movie “White Men Can’t Jump”. While I haven’t seen it in a LONG time, I remember the gist of it. White boys shocks everyone because he can play ball. Is it a stereotype that race plays a factor in how good of an athlete you are? Test your knowledege.
Surprised by anything?
We will continue to look at a couple more highlights from the exhibit “Race: Are we so different?”. If you have missed any, you can catch up here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4. To learn more about this exhibit visit Understanding Race.
Can scientists determine a person’s race by looking at their DNA?
Can experiencing racism lead to serious health consequences?
These are 2 of the 10 questions on the Human Variation Quiz. Run over and take it, I’ll wait…
How’d you do? Were you surprised by any of the answers? Tell us!
Stay tuned as we continue to look at a few more highlights from the exhibit “Race: Are we so different?”. If you missed our previous highlights, check them out: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3. To learn more about this great exhibit visit Understanding Race.
Today I’m linking to the Who is White? quiz. Take it and see what you think. In her own words, this is why Vernellia Randall, Professor of Law, University of Dayton Law School, developed it:
I created this survey to help show that we make judgments not only about who is white but also about what countries are white (or predominantly white), and to call attention to some of the questions this raises.
For example, when someone is not considered white is a citizen of a country that is considered white, that person is often perceived as a foreigner. For instance, even though the families of many Japanese Americans have been in the U.S. much longer than the families of European Americans, they are often viewed as outsiders.
Our opinions about who is white and who is not can affect how we relate to one another. Race matters because discrimination based on perceived racial grouping continues to exist.”
To learn more about the exhibit, visit Understanding Race
Okay, so I have never been a fan of Dr. Laura Schlessinger (aka Dr. Laura). But, yesterday she made sure that I never will be.
Today she issued an apology and “hopes Jade will call back” so she can give her the help she needs (really?). I hope Dr. Laura gets the help SHE needs and spends some time examining her remarks and beliefs.
Jade, if you’re out there, here’s the answer you were looking for on dealing with friends and family who make racist remarks:
Communication is key. If you never share your feelings, they will never know they are offending you. Begin by believing the best in the person and stating so. “I’m sure you never intended to be hurtful, however…”
Anticipate and rehearse. Take some time and prepare possible responses beforehand. This is good to do with your children too.
DARE – Here’s a great acronym to remember how to handle the situation.
Duplicate the offending statement (repeat verbatim): “When you said…”
Articulate how the statement made you feel: “I felt…”
Request a change in behavior: “I need for you to not make those types of statements in my presence anymore because…”
Explain consequences if the behavior is repeated: “If you continue to make these types of negative statements…”
Follow through! If you say that you will leave if “x” happens again, then follow through and leave the next time. And the next. And the next. If it is a friend, I would limit how many “next times” there will be before letting the friendship end. However, with family, I would prove to be the “bigger” person.
As for your husband, I would continue to keep the lines of communication open with him as well. I’m only guessing that he ignores the situations because he doesn’t know how to handle them either. Maybe the two of you could sit down and discuss some “anticipated responses” together. Don’t let race come between the two of you, let it be something that brings you together!
There is a traveling exhib that was developed by the American Anthropological Association, titled “Race: Are we so different?”. The exhibit examines racial issues through history, science, and experiences. This is a wonderful exhibit that offers a wealth of information. I thought it would be fun to highlight a few of my favorite parts of the exhibit over my next several posts.
Let’s start with an introduction to the exhibit:
To learn more about the exhibit or dig deeper, visit Understanding Race
Today, I will be on a local radio show with Beatrice Johnston from the YWCA and the “Reading to End Racism” program. Tune in to AM 1140 at 2 PM or listen to the podcast online here! Did you know that the YWCA’s mission is: “Eliminating Racism, Empowering Women”? Contact your local YWCA and see how you can get involved!
by Garth Williams
The Rabbits’ Wedding is, hands down, my youngest daughters favorite book. It has been as far back as I can remember. It’s a sweet story about two little rabbits, one white and the other black, who fall in love and want to be together forever. The illustrations are darling! Garth Williams is famous for illustrating many books, two of the most notable are Stuart Little and Charlotte’s Web. Here’s a favorite page that always produces laughs:
Interestingly, the book was banned in several places during the 1960’s for fear that it was “brainwashing” children into thinking integration/interracial marriage was good.
Sweet message + darling illustrations = priceless!
At what age should you start talking to your children about race?
Birgitte Vittrup of the Children’s Research Lab at the University of Texas tried to answer that question in her 2006 study. A recent article in Newsweek focused on the results of her study — See Baby Discriminate. Kids as young as 6 months judge other based on skin color. What’s a parent to do? [btw, I hated the title of the article–it begged for a small readership].
While the study was extensive, and I didn’t agree with much of it, it showed that the majority of [white] families simply could not bring themselves to discuss race with their 5-7 year olds. “We don’t want to have these conversations with our child. We don’t want to point out skin color.”
According to Vittrup, hardly any of these white parents had ever talked to their children directly about race. They might have asserted vague principles—like “Everybody’s equal” or “God made all of us” or “Under the skin, we’re all the same”—but they’d almost never called attention to racial differences. They wanted their children to grow up “colorblind”.
The article also mentioned that in homes of people of color, race is discussed much more openly. I can attest to that in our home. I know from a very early age, we have been careful that our children don’t buy what the media sells (i.e. beauty = blond hair + blue eyes + white skin). It is very much apart of our lives on a daily basis. I personally think efforts are misguided if children are raised to be “colorblind”. Color is the very first thing people see and our society and history dictate the inability to be such.
I’m curious to hear what other families have to say, how do you talk to your children about race? at what age do you begin?
Okay, I admit it. I have failed. I was SO excited about starting this blog and was confident about what it was supposed to be. Since then, I have allowed the fear of judgment, expectation and failure to creep in. Thus, I have done nothing with it!
Let me just start and put it all on the table. I’m a perfectionist. If it’s not perfect, I don’t want to do it. I know, I’m working on it. I’m laying it down. I don’t want to worry about this blog being perfect. My grammar might not be correct; there might even be typo’s (eek)! I don’t want to get bogged down with details. I DO want this blog to be a safe place to encourage and edify each other. I want people to feel free to talk about their experiences, both good and bad. I want us to share our feelings today that may shift and mold into a new perspective tomorrow. Here’s some insight on me…my immediate family is still dysfunctional when it comes to dealing with race and racism. I want this to be a safe place for us to “meet at the table”. I want this to be a place of reflection for whatever side of the table you sit on.
Let’s pull up a chair…