Social Networking, Media, Pop Culture, Internet Culture, and Technology in the Social Studies Classroom
If you are a teacher, you have to watch this. If you have school age children, you have to watch this. And if you know a teacher….make them watch this. I plan on showing this at staff development for our new school year.
If you need some motivation while you’re grading and lesson planning this weekend.
LBGTQ* Safety and Ally Assistance
(photo from University of Richmond’s Common Ground)
(following text from Youth Pride, Inc)
Ten suggestions for reducing homophobia in your environment
1. Make no assumption about sexuality. If a student has not used a pronoun when discussing a relationship, don’t assume one. Use neutral language such as “Are you seeing anyone” instead of “Do you have a boyfriend”. Additionally, do not assume that a female student who confides a “crush” on another girl is a lesbian. Labels are often too scary and sometimes not accurate. Let students label themselves.
2. Have something gay-related visible in your office. A sticker, a poster, a flyer, a brochure, a book, a button… This will identify you as a safe person to talk to and will hopefully allow a gay, lesbian, bisexual or questioning youth to break his/her silence. SAFE ZONE campaign stickers and resources can provide this visibility.
3. Support, normalize and validate students’ feelings about their sexuality. Let them know that you are there for them. If you cannot be supportive, please refer to someone who can be. Then work on your own biases by reading, learning and talking to people comfortable with this issue. And always remember, the problem is homophobia not homosexuality.
4. Do not advise youth to come out to parents, family and friends as they need to come out at their own safe pace. Studies show as many as 26% of gay youth are forced to leave their home after they tell their parents. IT IS THEIR DECISION and they have to live with the consequences. Help them figure out what makes sense for them.
5. Guarantee confidentiality with students. Students need to know their privacy will be respected or they will not be honest about this important issue. If you cannot maintain confidentiality for legal reasons, let students know this in advance.
6. Challenge homophobia. As a role model for your students, respond to homophobia immediately and sincerely. Encourage in-service trainings for staff and students on homophobia and its impact on gay and lesbian youth.
7. Combat heterosexism in your classroom. Include visibly gay and lesbian role models in your classroom.
8. Learn about and refer to community organizations. Familiarize yourself with resources and call them before you refer to make sure they are ongoing. Also, become aware of gay-themed bibliographies and refer to gay-positive books.
9. Encourage school administrators to adopt and enforce anti-discrimination policies for their schools or school systems which include sexual orientation. The language should be included in all written materials next to race, sex, religion, etc.
10. Provide role models. Gay and straight students benefit from having openly gay teachers, coaches and administration. Straight students are given an alternative to the inaccurate stereotypes they have received and gay students are provided with the opportunity to see healthy gay adults. You, as teachers, can help by making gay and lesbian students feel more welcome.
Suggestions compiled by Youth Pride, Inc.
Every teacher can and should be an ally to their LGBT students.
My first ever bulletin board!
It’s off center, but I give approximately zero bothers. This absent work board was my mentor teacher’s best idea.
OMG IDEA. Perhaps for my form class next year, since I’m sharing one this year.
I will most definitely have to implement this when I have my own classroom.
I like this idea for a Middle School level social studies class.
History + Music + Video = Entertained Students
I used this video in my classroom to compare and contrast primary source accounts of the battle with paintings and this song, and my students analyzed the differences and artistic interpretations.
A man sits on a rock as police investigate a shooting at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek, Wis., that left six people, plus the gunman, dead on Sunday.
“People think we are Muslims,” Manjit Singh, who attends a different temple in the region, tells The New York Times. But Sikhs are totally separate from Islam, despite some vaguely similar aesthetic practices. So just what is Sikhism, what do Sikhs believe, where does the religion come from, and what’s its place in America today?
- Briefly, what is Sikhism?
A monotheistic religion founded in the 1400s in the Punjab region of India, based on the teachings of Guru Nanak Dev and his nine immediate successors. Sikh comes from the Sanskrit for “disciple” or “instruction.” Sikhism is now the fifth largest religion in the world, with more than 27 million members, most of them living in Punjab. There are only about 314,000 Sikhs in the U.S., and some 3,000 Sikh families in southeastern Wisconsin, where the shooting took place.
- What do Sikhs believe?
Sikhism preaches equality of all humankind, peaceful coexistence, a universal brotherhood of man, and one supreme God. Sikhs are encouraged to do good deeds in the world, and observant Sikh males typically don’t cut their hair or beards, and cover their heads with colorful turbans; women often wear scarves to cover their heads. Sikhs tend to be vegetarians, and baptized males carry a small ceremonial sword (or Kirpan) on their person. Most Sikh men have “Singh” (lion) in their last name, while most women have “Kaur” (princess) as their surname.
- What’s Sikhism relationship to Islam?
None. They are distinct religions, founded in different parts of the world and based on significantly different philosophies. Americans sometimes appear to conflate Sikhs and Muslims or Arabs because of the turbans and other superficial similarities. In fact, Sikhs have a fraught relationship with Islam — several of the 10 founding Gurus were martyred for refusing to convert to Islam or to protect Sikhs from forcible conversion.
- What’s the story of Sikhs in America?
Sikhs started migrating to the U.S. in significant numbers after World War II, largely for economic reasons. Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, violence against Sikhs has seen a troubling rise, often accompanied by the attacker accusing the victims of belonging to al Qaeda or other Islamic terrorist groups. In a handful of cases, the Sikhs died in the attacks. “Every Sikh American today is hurting, grieving and afraid,” Sikh filmmaker Valarie Kaur tells the Associated Press. “That turban has tragically marked us as automatically suspect, perpetually foreign and potentially terrorists.” On the other hand, there are also clear signs Sikhs are assimilating — South Carolinians recently elected the daughter of Sikh immigrants, Nikki Haley (R), as their governor. And Americans’ response to the Wisconsin shooting “gives me hope,” says Valarie Kaur. “Any expressions of solidarity, messages, prayers, will be felt not only by Sikhs in Milwaukee but all over the country.”
Celebrate diversity and educate yourself on the many faiths of our students.
If I ever go back and get my teaching certification, I want this map for my classroom.
LGBTQ* Flow Charts
“Okay to Say Gay”
Personal Note: You should still ask someone before you refer to them as gay/label them as gay. Remember, words have power outside of definition. — Rebecca, Moderator of KNOWhomo
Do your students use the phrase “That’s So Gay”? Here’s an infographic flowchart to help students, or anyone for that matter, decide when it’s okay call something “gay”.
I was in a class during my student teaching, when two female students referred to a movie they had seen as “gay”, and without missing a beat, I said to them, “Oh, I didn’t know movies could be attracted to other movies of the same genre.” They stared at me a bit incredulously, and I continued with the lesson.
I felt it was a great teachable moment, made even better that I didn’t call them out specifically or yell or lecture, but merely pointed out how silly it is to call a non-human thing “gay”. Later, as the students were leaving, I had a male student come up to me and comment on how smart I was.