By Nic Stone
In four years of high school required reading, I encountered only three African-American characters. All were men, and though one had a relatively happy ending ― yay, freedom from slavery! ― the other two, well… One was (spoiler alert) killed while attempting to escape from prison after being wrongfully convicted of a heinous crime. The other, who was slowly coaxed out of his shell and convinced it was okay to dream, was firmly shoved back into his place by a white woman with an ego problem.
All three characters were written by white authors. And none of them got to be heroes.
LINK: Huffington Post
By Kristy Louden
I have a confession to make: I am terrible at handing back papers. That sounds silly, right? I mean, you literally just hand the paper to the kid whose name is at the top.
But teachers everywhere know how disheartening that small act can be. (It can’t be just me, right?)
There are the eye rolls and the whispering to each other of “What did you get?” and “She gave me a ___.” Next thing you know, the paper you spent so long reading and marking has been shoved into the abyss of the backpack or tossed carelessly in the recycle bin.
Wow, glad I put so much time into that assignment, said no teacher ever.
LINK: con’t Cult of Pedagogy
By Ray Salazar
My guiding principle when bringing controversy into the classroom is this: ground the conversation in a text.
With this approach, my Chicago Public Schools writing students focus on the ideas. The conversation doesn’t veer off into the abyss of hypotheticals, exaggerations, and explosive personal experiences that only reaffirm what we already believe.
As difficult as it was to listen to Trump’s Oval Office Address about the border wall, I listened to the real-world example of rhetorical principles my high-school junior and senior students study at Hancock College Prep on Chicago’s Southwest side.
What did they find?
Trump focused on evoking anxiety, heartache, horror, distress, exasperation. And my students disappointedly began to conclude that Trump achieved his rhetorical purpose:
To convince Americans that there is a crisis at the border and funding for a wall should be approved so the government shutdown can end.
“He makes this sound so simple,” Jose said. “Something that can be solved in one forty-five minute meeting.”
“He wants to make immigrants sound evil,” Ximena’s table told me.
Disheartened, they recognized that Trump succeeded.
LINK: con’t Latino Rebels