Tag Archives: Diversity

Baby Needs Glasses

By Katee10-DSC_0184

We were gifted a cute tiny pair of glasses frames from the Thread of Justice Conference that fit perfectly on our baby dolls.  We are so happy to have the glasses as a conversation about difference and ability.

09-DSC_0081Today we read an excerpt from an anatomy book about our sense of sight. The book told us that our eyes send messages to our brain in pictures.  It also said that sometimes glasses can help people to see.  Many children had a connection with this.

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“I’m really sewing!”

Self portraits have been hanging on the walls for weeks, but these projects sat on the shelf temporarily to make room for all of the other whirlwinds of January and February.  Last week we were able to get the supplies back out and continue this study.  If your child hasn’t made one yet- they are on our list!  Here are a few more newly sewn – selves:

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OE:

“My eyes are kinda green, kinda brown”


ASY:

“My hair is long here and short over on this side. My lips are really red.”

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Sewing the Self

By Katee

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ER, GNF, RR, KM, SH, LF, AS, EP, CW

We have taken our sewing to new exciting heights in the past couple weeks with self-portrait projects! The children have been busy reflecting on themselves and looking at their reflections with two simultaneous self-portrait projects happening at our school.  Our sewing project allows the children to try to match their skin color to felt, their hair to yarn and ribbons, and their eyes to buttons and beads.  The children of course added many details that I hadn’t even thought of.

Many children pointed out that their skin was not exactly like this felt, and that their hair was only sort of similar to the yarns.  I am finding it to be a beautiful opposition to the self-portraits that they are working on with Alisha where they get to try to create their very own unique skin color.  “No one’s skin is

made out felt fabric, and no one’s eyes are made of buttons.”, I told them, “So you won’t find anything as unique and beautiful as you are at the craft store!”  I think it has been a great contrasting project to find out that there are so many more than 4 colors of skin, or 3 colors of eyes.  The shades and spectrum of people that we see everyday are beautiful and unique!

Come and see our self-portraits as they feel completed and hang on our walls!

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And We Sing in Harmony

By Katee

AS said that “We all sing with the same voice if we keep up with each other”

KM said, “I think this song is about being friends.”

This morning I had a few children ask me if I went to the Women’s March this weekend.  In the past, I have tried to keep my political views generally out of the classroom, but this feels very different.  It feels different because of the intensity of the issues at hand for our nation and our world, but mostly it feels different because we are more than just a school.  Tulip Tree Preschool is a community and the elected President and current cabinet picks do not stand to uphold the core values we have laid out here.

So I told the children, “Yes.  I marched in the rain on Saturday.  I walked with 100,000 people, carrying a sign that said, ‘Love Still Lives Here’.”  And then I asked if anyone else had marched this weekend.  Every child at my lunch table raised their hands and children at every lunch table chimed in too.  I felt an amazing sense of love living here.  I felt an incredible sense of hope and strength in our community. Strength in support. Strength in willingness. Strength in numbers. Continue reading

Black is Beautiful

By Katee

All of this talk around here about light and shadow, has brought up a lot of thinking about darkness and the color black along with it.  We noticed that many songs, stories, and imagery about light focus on the light shining through the darkness.  But where would we be without the darkness?

When talki3-img_20160929_094422635_hdrng about the concept of light KM told us, “When I cover my eyes, I see nothing- just black.” Many other children covered their eyes and agreed.  If you cover your eyes right now, you probably won’t see any things, but what you will see is darkness.

There are many negative associations with darkness and the color black in our society- from being afraid of the dark in your bedroom at night, to being afraid of humans with dark skin.  We do not want to promote any negative associations with darkness and/or the color black. We work to build a school culture that not only recognizes differences in the tone of people’s skin, but celebrates difference and diversity.  Its true that we often fear what we do not know, and when it is dark in our bedroom and our human eyes are unable to piece together a picture, we often feel afraid.  Light can help illuminate the mysterious darkness. But darkness also brings us so much beauty and gives the earth and it’s creatures necessary rest.

As we searched for a song or poem about beautiful darkness for the children, we couldn’t find any. Every song we found was focused on light prevailing through darkness.  If something is creepy or depressing we may say it is “dark”, a black cat crossing your path is bad luck, and many evil characters are portrayed in darkness.  The “dark side” and the “light side” can be a dangerous false dichotomy that promotes binary thinking and supports racial prejudice.  So we wanted to explore the color black further to bring in into the forefront of the children’s minds as a beautiful thing all it’s own, and not simply the absence of other colors, lights, and things.

This week we read an old book we discovered on our shelf titled “Black is Beautiful” by Ann McGovern and Hope Wurmfeld.  The book looks around at the world and discovers many beautiful black things.  The children continued this by pointing out black that they saw in their home pictures on the wall, and searching around our school.  We also explored with many black materials on the tables this week.  Look around your world with your child and see what beautiful black things you can find.

Today we found:

This week we worked with: