Why #blacklivesmatters should matter to all social studies teachers

The recent events of George Floyd and the subsequent protest have been a crazy chain of events for some teachers.

But for teachers of color, this is nothing new.

These acts of racism is an ” I told you so” moment in history that many people of color have been waiting on.

We have told you for decades about the injustices faced daily by people of color, and in response, we were told:

“Things are getting better for you, right?”
“At least it’s not as bad as slavery.”
“I don’t think racism exists anymore.”
“If black people stop committing crimes, they wouldn’t be in that situation.”
“I am not racist, so I have done nothing wrong.”

One of the most important questions you can ask yourself is:

Were you raised with fear that there are people who will judge you or even kill you because of the color of your skin?

Would you want to be treated as a black person in America?

With the recent tragic events, a new light is shed on the bloody history of the United States regarding the mistreatment of people of color.

How can you support the end of injustice in the United States?

Do

Research the history of race relations in the United States, process it, and then TEACH!

Ask questions

Understand the fact that as a white person, you will never experience racism.

Learn strategies on teaching about racism and racial injustice

Own your privilege and get uncomfortable with it

Address your own biases and racist ideals or stereotypes

Don’t

Say, ” all lives matter.” It is incredibly offensive to the victims who have died because they are black

Create bulletin boards about victims of police brutality, without conducting a lesson with your students or providing clear reasons.

Buy and use clip art that depicts people of color in stereotypical away.

Continue to teach social studies, disregarded the history of people of color.

This will be a learning process as we relearn how to view the world. It will not be easy and you may end up with more questions than answers, but at least you are starting the process of changing the way you see yourself and others.

Why should Black Lives Matter to ALL teachers? You can check out my response below.

Resources

Lesson Plans and Ideas

Zinn Education Project- Provides full lesson plans dealing with racial injustice throughout history. I love the lesson plans because they can be easily incorporated into a scope and sequence.

Teaching for Change-Provides resources for teachers to help students learn how to change the injustices in the world.”Teaching for Change encourages teachers and students to question and re-think the world inside and outside their classrooms, build a more equitable, multicultural society, and become active global citizens.”-Teacher for change mission statement

Selma, Lord Selma- This is the Disney versions depiction of the Selma Marches in Alabama. I show this movie every year in my civics class, and have students identify the rights violated throughout the film.

Books

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

Book by Michelle Alexander

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Growing Up White

Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain

Social Media 

Read Like A Rockstar– Naomi O’Brien is an elementary teacher who has dedicated her social media to talking about race and racism in the classroom. She post ways to teach racisim in the classroom and also poses questions and statements to change the viewpoit on racism.

The Conscious Kid – Post parent and educator resources that teaches through a critical racial lens. Their post highlight injustices in the education system in the United States

Learning_inhues– Haitian educator who promotes incorporating culture in the classroom. Her resources are simply amazing.

Revelations in Education-A website with resources about racial injustices. Provided to me by fellow teacher Larry Waite 😁.

Articles

Truth and Reconciliation: Addressing Systematic Racism in the United States By Danyelle Solomon 
The Long, Painful History of Police Brutality in the U.S.

Black Lives Matter History

Racism scale: Where do you belong?

Donate 

George Floyd Fund – A go fund me to help support George Floyds Family and legal funds.

Minnesota Freedom Fund- Is not longer accepting donations, but the foundation uses funds to pay the bail of protesters arrested.

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