AFA of PA ACTION ALERT
January 23, 2012
1.) Is Your Child’s School Participating In This?
2.) President Obama’s Statement on the Anniversary of Roe v. Wade –Click here.
1.) This is “No Name Calling Week” (NNCW) in our nation’s schools! Sounds good until you realize it is the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN) who is behind it. GLSEN’s ultimate goal is to normalize the homosexual lifestyle – telling kids that ‘It’s okay to be gay.’ Last week they released a 68-page elementary toolkit called “Ready, Set, Respect
Here are some statements from that publication’s introduction:
[E]lementary school children are bombarded every day with messages about different groups of people in our society, many of which portray these groups in a negative, socially undesirable way. Those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) are often among these groups. In addition to influencing attitudes, the messages children receive about these people also influences (sic) how they will make sense of gender and inform how they think about their own identity… without intentional guidance, the messages children receive about groups of people, as well as various identities and gender roles can complicate this process and contribute to bullying, prejudice and bias.
While most elementary educators have embraced this work and construct and conduct lessons focused on diversity, recent research suggests that intentional efforts to include explicit lessons that foster respect for differences in gender identity or gender expression or that include families with LGBT parents/caregiver, siblings, or other individuals significant in our student’s lives, are less frequent. As a result, many students go through their elementary school years without positive mentions of families that include LGBT persons or friends or people who may be gender non-conforming.
The elementary school years offer a wonderful and important opportunity to instill and/or nurture positive attitudes and respect for individual, family and cultural differences, including diversity related to sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.
More specific instructions include the following:
- Make sure the analogies you use when teaching don’t rely on hetero-normative or gender-normative images or viewpoints. A hetero-normative viewpoint is one that expresses heterosexuality as a given instead of being one of many possibilities. Such a viewpoint can translate into the development of all kinds of images that reinforce the view. The assumption (reinforced by imagery and practice) that a boy will grow up and marry a woman is based on such a viewpoint. A gender-normative image, on the other hand is one that delimits the possibilities for children of either gender by reinforcing stereotyped expectations.
- Find ways of grouping and lining up students other than “boys here, girls there” or “boys do this, girls do that.” While some students may enjoy these ways of separating the class, they can isolate other students who may feel uncomfortable conforming to gender-based stereotypes.
- Monitor choice activity time to ensure that students are not segregating themselves by gender.
- Become more aware of the ways that you support gender stereotypes in your expectations of students and their work and intervene when you hear students making genderbased assumptions.
- Write math problems with contexts that include a variety of family structures and gender-expressions. For example, “Rosa and her dads were at the store and wanted to buy three boxes of pasta. If each costs $.75, how much will all three boxes cost?”(emphasis added)
Now you see where GLSEN is coming from and such thinking will be reflected in this week’s NNCW lessons.
1.) Call your child’s school and see if they are participating in ‘No Name Calling Week.”
2.) Share this information with others who are concerned with what is going on in our schools.