Unpacking and Welcoming the Race Talk
Written by: Counselor Bee
Freedom fighters around the globe are uniting to champion the fight for justice after the murdering of Breonna Taylor, an African American emergency room technician, in Louisville. Upon the heels of investigating Breonna's death, George Floyd's life was cut short and streamed across the world. Resulting in his death due to the use of unnecessary ecessive force used with a police officer maintaining his knee to the neck of the victim for close to nine minutes. George's final words having crying out for his deceased mother being "I CAN'T BREATHE".
There is no place for hatred or bigotry on my page and during my guidance lessons. I stand in solidarity with the African American community in support of #blacklivesmatter. It is our individual duty, as School Counselor & educators to dismantle racism, creating the change we wish to see in the world, and allowing the world to know that we can all contribute to being better every day. It is understood that there is a lot to be learned and there will be a need for resources to help support the African American community and start the conversations of eliminating hatred and discrimination.
As an upcoming children's author, I have taken on the role of being able to provide positive affluent characters in present and future children's books. As an educator, it is my responsibility to show solidarity with promoting positive messages, sharing lessons, choosing activities that relate to the importance of race & being united, and helping challenge each reader to think higher of themselves. The first week of June kicked off with lessons & strategies for "Unconscious Biases".
Reminder: As you move forward this week please remember a few key details.
Books should include people who affirm their identity
Exercise: Allow your child or student to chose a book that reflects his/her culture, traditions
ethnicity. Challenge your child to recreate the book in their own words.
Child play is essentail due to children being able to express their innervoices with pretend play.
Support diverse television shows and music.
Include teaching social emotional learning (compassion, respect, honesty, self-advocacy)
"Not addressing the issue of racism is addressing the issue- which allows the world to shape your child. I challenge you to think about this statement: "It is always a privilege to educate yourself about racism instead of living through the experiences of racism".
What is #blackouttuesday
It is a visual representation of how the African American community has been essential in the building of this nation and the impact of dismissing the importance of the black and brown by the founding fathers of this nation. It is a time to protest and promote other black owned businesses, promote black mental awareness resources and literary works.
Helpful resources for conversations at home:
Want to Sign a Petition. Pick a Cause.
"Why I'm No Longer Talking To White People About Race"- Reni Eddo-Lodge
"I Am Enough"- Grace Byers
"Hair Love"- Matthew Cherry
"Hair with Flair"- Audrey Hinds
"Princess Amani's First Date" & "David's Magic Ears"- Barbara Hinyard
"Voice of Freedom:Fannie Lou Hamer"- Carole Boston Weatherford
"Angie Wonders"- Renee Winters
"Brown Sugar Babe"- Charlotte Watson Sherman
"Say Something"- Peter Reynolds
"Concrete Rose"- Angie Thomas
"Kynnedi's World"- Tamika Patterson
"Black Girl Shine"- Shavondra Walker
& of course yours truly "Wishing on a Star" & "Ryder the Biter"
Create your book: encourage your child to create a book based on a character with their skin tone, their traditions, culture and customs. Share the story aloud and react the story.
Toothpaste erase: On a paper plate write down all the words that have hurt over time. Reflect with attaching an emotion to the word. Use the toothpaste as being the emotion felt each time. Some words will resulting in a little toothpaste and some the use of a lot. In the end, ask your child to put the toothpaste back inside the tube. (words can hurt, they can cause damage and sometimes leave lasting effects).
Name that tune: Research the writer and composers of some of the classics of Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Dolly Parton, Garth Brooks, the Beatles, Little Richard, and Prince. This will allow your child to discover other artists often times songwriters for other talents, regardless to their race and/or music genre.