• Take time to review:
  • Your Diversity Profile from EDUC 6164 (Perspectives on Diversity and Equity) WK1Agg2
  • What you have learned about “equity pedagogy” (such as Anti-Bias Education)-attached
  • The poem “I Am From: A Poem of My Cultural Identities“-attached

  • A copy of your poem (a poem has to be made up based on cultural/social identity)
  • The multiple cultural identities revealed in your poem and the social messages you may have received related to these identities
  • Two ways your identity development as a child could have been positively influenced by equity pedagogy, such as Anti-Bias

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My Social Identities

Chandra Farmer

Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Diversity in Early Childhood Education, Walden University

EDUC 6164: Perspectives on Diversity and Equity

Wendy Mccarty

January 16th, 2022

My Social Identities Which of your social identities did you assume, i.e., have you chosen? I would have to say my chosen social identity is “ethnicity/religion.” This social identity helped to shape who I am as woman today. To put it simply, I was destined to become who I was at birth; in other words, I was biologically programmed into the person I have become today. In most circumstances, people will be classified as a particular ethnic group without feeling it or recognizing it themselves; social identity provides people with a framework for socializing and a sense of self-esteem. (Deaux, 2001). Which ones have been ascribed by others and/or by circumstances? Social identity theory states that our identities are formed through the groups to which we belong; as a result, we are motivated to improve the image and status of our own group compared to with others (Deaux, 2001). My identities ascribed by others or circumstances would include “relationships, gender, and ethnicity.” In addition to how I view myself, social identity also influences how I treat people. For example, a common phrase in my family was, “in order to get respect; you should give it.” On the other hand, I have adopted a more social constructionist view. I believe to understand the experiences of others; I need not have to belong to the same gender, race, class, age, ethnic groups and share the same experiences. Instead, I must be able to grasp the sense of the experiences of others, by reflecting on my own identities in relation to others, and identifying, describing, and explaining those experiences. Which ones, if any, cannot be so clearly categorized, and for what reason(s)? The two social identities that cannot be categorized are “ethnicity and gender.” I tend to believe that only people who are in similar positions, such as gender, age, race etc. can understand the experiences of others.

Which social identities, if any, afford you advantages and/or disadvantages, and in what ways? One social identity that affords me an advantage is the “vocations/avocations” identity. Even as a child, I loved to help people. My job as a teacher is gratifying to me. When a family places their children in my care, it takes trust and a working relationship with the families to create a sense of community. The social identity “ethnicity/race” identity carries a disadvantage. Being of African American decent, I was always told to work hard at your job and for the things you have. Getting ahead continues to elude members of this ethnic group based on personal and family upbringing experience. That certainly does not mean no African Americans are doing well. My grandmother/mother would tell me stories of how racism was very prevalent back then, including “segregation.” Until the 1960s, African Americans had few legal rights or protections. Which of your social identities do you believe conforms most/least to the stereotypical traits attributed to it by society—and in what ways? The social identity that provides the least amount of stereotypical traits attributed by society is “relationships.” Relationships are essential no matter your race, color, gender, creed, or sexual orientation. For example, as an early childhood educator, I need to understand, respect, and welcome children and families of diverse cultures. Communication is the basis for any positive relationship. Families need to feel comfortable sharing information with me about their child (Xu & Gulosino, 2006). Which one of your social identities evokes deep, strong emotions? The ethnicity/race identity captures strong emotions when I think about it reflectively. In what ways does this emotional connection manifest itself in your life? It puts me in the mind frame of “implicit bias.” I would like to believe that I am not subject to these prejudices and biases; the fact is that everyone gets entangled in them, whether or not they like it (Brownstein et al., 2020). Media plays a significant role in discriminating black over white by introducing whitening creams in the market and by showing “Black” is bad and “White” is good and based on that, we judge individuals around us (Brownstein et al., 2020).

In what way(s) do any or all of your social identities influence your behavior when you are with people who are like you/different from you? Besides the fact that our world is not conditioned by our current stereotypes in the society to which I was born, it is typically not possible to isolate oneself from the social impact or social gathering of others; experiences affect implicit biases, but behaviors may not be the product of direct personal experiences (Brownstein et al., 2020). In what ways do other people’s or groups’ behaviors influence your social roles? A person can still express explicit disagreement about a particular attitude or faith while still carrying similar preconditions (Brownstein et al., 2020). I will continue to learn more about my unconscious thought and how culture affects me; these implicit biases are inducted by the natural propensity to screen, sort, and categorize details about others and the world; because of these patterns, we are vulnerable to partiality (Brownstein et al., 2020).

References

Brownstein, M., Madva, A., & Gawronski, B. (2020). Understanding implicit bias: Putting the criticism into perspective. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, 101(2), 276–307.

Deaux, K. (2001). Social identity. In J. Worell (Ed.), Encyclopedia of women and gender (Vols. 1–2, pp. 1–9). Maryland Heights, MO: Academic Press.

Xu, Z., & Gulosino, C. (2006). How does teacher quality matter? The effect of teacher–parent partnership on early childhood performance in public and private schools. Education Economics, 14(3), 345–367.

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Copyright © 2007-2011 Shaun-Adrian F. Choflá 

I Am From: A Poem of My Cultural Identities

By

Shaun-Adrian F. Choflá

Why a poem?

Growing up, even during early childhood and primary school, I was never considered a “good student.” I didn’t see the point. If you asked me the reason for my disinterest in learning ten years ago, I might have professed that what I was asked to learn was not relevant to me. Though there is likely some truth to this that was not entirely the only reason I engaged in what Kohl refers to as a refusal to learn. After studying anti-bias education (ABE) in college, using it with the young children I have been fortunate to serve, and teaching ABE in my college learning communities – I learned that my refusal to learn had more to do with how I was viewed by others.

I refused to learn because in so many ways my multiple cultural identities were dishonored, devalued, and disrespected by society and school. I was the fat, dark skinned Mexican others seemed to avoid. I was the effeminate boy no one wanted on their team. I was the kid with weird parents. I was often viewed and thus viewed myself as defective. What was the point in learning?

It took decades for me to recover from the pain inflicted on me as a child and writing the following poem was in part – one of many essential elements of my transformative journey. George Ella Lyon, an educator, poet, and activist, developed the basic design of the poem.

I wrote the following poem in honor and celebration of who I am, and everything that makes me – me.

Copyright © 2007-2011 Shaun-Adrian F. Choflá 

I am from tortillas and flan

from burritos warmed on an engine block

I am from a farm in south Phoenix, a house my parent’s could barely afford in Scottsdale, the weekends in Prescott, and the summers in El Paso, Tejas

I am from four cars in the driveway that didn’t work – the best place where I could pretend I was a racecar driver

I am from chickens, pigs, and cows

I am from “sit down before I make you sit down” and “Your Dad still loves you – he just had a bad day”

I am from Chihuahua, Mexico and Hamburg, Germany

From homesteaded land in El Paso, Tejas and a tent city for domestic workers in Chicago, Illinois

I am from love, pain, abuse, and fear

From unconditional love and hope

I am from a house full of dogs who taught me how to feel loved

I am from “You act like a faggot” and “They did mean anything by it – you are just special”

I am from walking home from school when I was five with my older brother and feeling like I could be anything (as long as he was near)

I am from eating food in my closet to being unsure why there was no food in the kitchen

I am from “Abuela Chula” with her jingling charm bracelets and Gramma and Granpa who lived in the woods and who could make anything out of nature (they even had raccoons!)

I am from a heart that wanted to love

From a soul who needed to be touched

I am from a world that did not appreciate my beauty until I was an adult

Where are you from?

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EDUC6357: Diversity, Development, and Learning “Start Seeing Diversity: Introduction”

Program Transcript

NARRATOR: At the Washington Beach Community Preschool, we want our students to be proud of who they are. To be respectful of others. To recognize bias and injustice. And to act, both individually and in cooperation with others, against things that are unfair.

Achieving these goals can be challenging. In our society, many issues divide people. These include age, gender, sexual orientation, family composition, economic class, physical abilities and characteristics, race and ethnicity, and many others.

To explore and challenge bias related to these issues, we’ve implemented an anti-bias approach in our program. There are eight basic assumptions that guide our work. First, even very young children notice differences and begin to discriminate based on them. While many adults assume children don’t notice or discriminate based on the differences they see, experience and research tell us they do. Second, the problem is not that children notice differences, the problem is that our society values some of the differences as positive and sees others as negative, and that children absorb and act on those values.

Third, we do not all experience those biases in the same way. Depending on who we are, different biases support our identity or attack it. When the biases support identity, we often develop, even without realizing it, a feeling that our own knowledge, values, and ways of doing things are better than those of others. The biases deeply affect how people feel about ourselves, and how we feel and act towards others, whether we’re conscious of those affects or not.

Fourth, an anti-bias approach is important for all children and children’s programs. We are all bombarded by societal bias from movies, television, children’s books, family, friends, and many other sources. Fifth, like other adults, teachers are usually unaware of their biases. Therefore, we unintentionally perpetuate them in the environments we create for children. This isn’t our fault, and it can be changed. The biases are learned– they can be unlearned.

Sixth, this is a long term process. Unlearning old ways and developing new ones takes time. Sometimes this process is difficult. Staff members may find that we hold fundamentally different values from one another, or that we have been unknowingly perpetuating bias and stereotypes. We can also support each other as we learn about biases, and increased awareness can open doors to new friendships and experiences.

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Seventh, it’s important to create an environment where everyone’s participation is sought and valued, and where it’s OK to disagree with one another.

FEMALE SPEAKER: That’s part of building trust with people: being able to get angry and still talk things out.

NARRATOR: Does this mean every idea or perspective is OK, or that it’s all a matter of opinion? No. It means some perspectives are not compatible with an anti-bias approach based on social justice, but there is more than one way that is compatible. Eighth, an anti-bias approach is integrated into every aspect of the program. It’s a consideration in everything we do with children, and it’s a priority in the work we do together as adults. Staff and family members also do anti-bias work together, including ongoing discussions and activities.

In this video, we show how these eight anti-bias assumptions have affected our program. We want to share what we’ve learned about how children are affected by bias, and to get other adults thinking and talking about bias in relation to themselves and the children they serve. We want to convey the importance of integrating an anti-bias approach into programs for children, and to show in concrete ways that this is possible in a program without special resources.

Washington Beach Community Preschool is located in a public housing development and faces the problems common to child care programs around the country. There isn’t time in this video to show all the activities of a typical day in our program, or to include all of the kinds of bias we think about and try to address. The video does show, through anecdotes and examples, many of the ways we try to infuse an anti-bias perspective throughout an age appropriate program.

The video focuses on preschoolers, but gives a framework that can be used to develop anti-bias work with children of other ages. We hope you will adapt these strategy to make them relevant to the cultures and age groups in your setting. The video is divided into sections which demonstrate ways we have responded to six biases: age, gender, sexual orientation, class, physical abilities and characteristics, and race and ethnicity. The strategies discussed in each section can also be used to address other biases.

Whatever the issue, we begin anti-bias work in the classroom with strategies for building positive individual and group identity. This includes children’s identities within a family, as well as their racial, ethnic, class, gender, and physical identities. We find photographs to be an important tool for this purpose. We let the children in our program know that they are important by including photos of them in our materials. For example, we mount children’s photos on blocks, tubes,

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or cardboard and use them for dramatic play. Using their own photographs, children learn to recognize, match, and print simple phrases in a lotto game. Children also match their own photographs to name cards.

Activities like these are used throughout the curriculum to help children learn about themselves, and explore the ways they are similar to and different from one another. We have found that it is crucial to focus on similarities and differences that are relevant to the lives of the families and children in our own program. Acknowledging differences lays a foundation for the challenging of bias based on difference.

Here, two children describe each other in front of a small group and find that their skin color is different, but they’re both girls.

You will see tools and strategies like these used many times in the sections on specific biases.

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3-Practice strategies that support diversity and anti-bias perspectives

Knowledge is power. I learned in “Anti-bias education for young children and ourselves” it is important that early childhood educators keep building our understanding of the many diversity/equity issues regarding children, families, early childhood education, and society. Early childhood education has a deep faith that all people deserve the opportunities and resources to fulfill their complete humanity. I learned from “Anti-bias education for young children and ourselves” in an anti-bias classroom teachers intervene with immediate and follow-up activities to counter the hurtful effects of these messages. In anti-bias classroom, children learn of their individual diversity, and learn to be proud of themselves and their families. Children learn to respect human differences, to recognize bias and to speak up for what is right. Anti-bias education supports the principle that every child deserves to develop to their fullest potential. I learned from “Janet Gonzalez-Mena article” three ways to overcome cultural conflicts in caring for an infant. They are;

1) Resolve through understanding and negotiation

2) Resolve through caregiver education

3) Resolve through parent education

Early childhood education providers need to learn conflict management skills for when families and caregivers have different perspectives. I learned from the article “Taking a culturally sensitive approach in infant/toddler program” that parents and caregivers alike, both hold strong views about how babies are supposed to be taken care of. Not all children in care outside the family are in culturally assertive environments. With the many different cultures in America, many positive outcomes result. When adults manage and resolve conflicts related to caregiving, the fewer inconsistencies in approach the babies will experience. The curriculum we plan needs to support diversity and anti-bias perspectives. Just about every subject area in the early childhood education has the possibility for anti-bias education al themes and activities. These activities can be individualized or in a group. Teachers can support diversity and anti-bias perspectives in a classroom setting, field trips, simulated environments, or in a practicum site. Themes of self-discovery, family, and community are effective and honest when they include exploration of gender, ability, racial identity, culture, and economic class. Relationships and interactions with children and families, the visual and material environment, and the daily curriculum all come together to create diversity and an anti-bias learning environment. Children must feel secure, safe, loved, and nurtured to develop the basic trust they need for healthy development. One way we practice strategies that support an anti-bias classroom is through transitions. I learned from the article “The importance of transition” that planning for and supporting transitions between activities is beneficial to young children. Transitions from one activity to the next can be frustrating, confusing, and create challenging behavior in young children. Transition strategies must meet the individual needs as young children and the cultural and linguistic diversity of families.

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Who Am I?—The Journey Begins

Chandra Farmer

Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Diversity in Early Childhood Education (e.g., Master of Science in Nursing), Walden University

EDUC 6164: Perspective on Diversity and Equity

Wendy Mccarty

January 11th, 2022

Who Am I?—The Journey Begins

Part 1: Who Am I

Social identities that apply to me include ethnicity/religion, relationships, gender, socioeconomic status, and vocations/avocations. A person’s social identity specifies their groups and who they are (Deaux, 2001). 1. “For as long as I remember, I was taught to be proud of who I am as an African-American. “2. “I am a woman who knows what she wants.” 3. “I am a teacher who learns some new every day.” 4. “I am a sounding board for my student and parent relationships.” 5.” I am a change agent helping those in need of education.” 6. “I am a teacher embracing the unique needs of students.” 7. “I am a woman of quality who respects man’s equality.” 8. “I am an African-American woman who knows her power and worth.” 9. “I am a firm believer that two heads are better than one.” 10. “I am living for today and not tomorrow.”

Part 2: What Are My Goals for This Course?

Three professional goals regarding the study of diversity include: How can I develop a perspective and sensitivity that will enable me to provide culturally responsive education and care that meets and honors the needs of today’s diverse students and families; how have cultural/diversity differences created challenges in the classroom; and what impact do I want to have on the students and families I serve? Based on my questions, it aligns nicely with the statement “redefining good teaching” in response to the diverse students and families I serve. I am working on my personal growth by “valuing and affirming student background knowledge” disposition because I have learned how essential it is to determine students’ background knowledge. Finding that specific trait or skill allows the teacher to connect personally. When I see that connection with my little ones, they feel a sense of happiness and connectedness, which is what I am striving for.

References

Deaux, K. (2001). Social identity. In J. Worell (Ed.), Encyclopedia of women and gender (Vols. 1–2, pp. 1–9). Maryland Heights, MO: Academic Press.

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