The mental health experiences of students who are BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) are different than those of people who identify as white. Race-specific microaggressions, trauma, and systemic racism create fertile ground for depression, anxiety, and self-harm for students who are BIPOC. If educators are to truly be supportive, we must advocate for practices to honor the specific needs and identities of our BIPOC students.Read More
But PRIDE is about more
Reignite Your JOY for Teaching & Learning:Read More
It’s not an exaggeration to say education has endured significant changes in the last few years, requiring re-examination of how we “do” school (Zoom fatigue, anyone?). On top of shifts in instruction as a result of the pandemic, we are now seeing growing attention on the topic of Critical Race Theory (CRT). Release of the 1619 Project (now available in book format), along with the death of George Floyd and numerous black victims of police brutality, provided re-energized momentum for all populations to take a hard look at actions, processes, and policies enabling discrimination and perpetuating inequity. This work continues, now with defending teaching and learning about equity, anti-racism, and institutional racism.Read More
Celebrating Black History Month, Year-Round
Scrubbing the oatmeal from the blue enamel pot in my kitchen sink, I looked up when I heard,
“It’s a story we need to tell.
Not just in February--the coldest and shortest month,
but every day of the year, because this is our story.
It’s not “us and them, it’s February so we’ll take some time out and do this.”
It is every single day.
This is the story of us.
And, guess what? There’s no “them,” which is what we all try to make up.
In the U.S., it’s us. Not them.”
These words are from Ken Burns, the well-known documentarian. He’s discussing his film project, “Baseball,” which tells the story of the Negro Baseball League and baseball great Hank Aaron. Burns uses the film to demonstrate how far we have come, yet how far we still have to go.
Films, books, movies and experiences teach. Since I have a lot to learn, I decided to watch, read, ask, and attend so I could more fully understand our nation’s history.
The story of us.Read More
Creating a Diverse Curriculum
When I think back on all of my years of K-12 schooling, the only diversity included in the curriculum (if you can even call it that) were the ubiquitous studies of westward expansion, slavery, civil rights and a few prominent figures that emerged from those time periods. What I took away, as a young person of color, was that the influence and contributions of people like me were relegated to the margins of history. An additive to the mainstream narrative.
As classrooms in the U.S. continue growing in diversity, teachers are tasked with creating a more inclusive curriculum to reflect the voices and perspectives of a broader spectrum of people. By teaching the established curriculum, minority students often feel disengaged and unempowered resulting in lower levels of achievement. But when educators work to create a set of curricula that is relevant, meaningful, and affirming to diverse identities, their efforts result in positive outcomes both socially and academically. Research also shows that not only students of color, but white students greatly benefit from a diverse curriculum as the exposure enables them to grapple with multiple perspectives and build a better understanding of both self and others.Read More
Brand New Courses for YOU!
After the cold has (almost) left and the days get longer, the world begins to wake up and stretch a bit. Spring is about to come alive in education with these fantastic new offerings from Learners Edge!
This blog was originally published on November 6th, 2015, but it was so well received we wanted to share it again! We also added our Top Three Tips when working with students who are ELL.
As teachers we are constantly trying to improve ourselves, our teaching strategies, and our ways of interacting with each unique student. Learning is difficult in itself, but a language barrier makes things more complex. Below are 3 tips from Learners Edge about how to work with ELL students, along with some additional suggestions from Jennifer Marks, a teacher from Northborough, MA , who took Course 842: Achieving Success with English Language Learners.
Tip 1: Learn the culture.
On a recent trip overseas, I was delighted to sit down with a group of people who had emigrated from Africa to Norway. In talking about what leaving their country was like (they all spoke Arabic, Norwegian, and English)—they shared how helpful it was when teachers learned about their native culture. Understanding just some of the cultural norms helped the teacher, the students, and those who had emigrated transition to a new culture in a way that felt respectful and supportive. When teachers try their best to pronounce names or to honor cultural norms (i.e. food restrictions, social mores) it helps to alleviate micro-aggressions which can feel hurtful to those who are new.Read More
Learners Edge is passionately committed to providing you with continuing education coursework, materials, and tools that will help you succeed in your classroom and in your career.