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Lesson Plans

Re: What can we do?

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Tue, 13 May 1997 18:30:35 -0700 (PDT)

The part of your communication that attracted my attention was your quote "Take a stand. Don't laugh at racist jokes...."
I let my students know that racist comments and jokes are not tolerated in my classroom. I have had very little trouble with this because I practice this philosophy in my life, not just at my job.
The problem of racism comes up frequently in one of my classes. One of my black students believes that it is okay to use the word "nigger" because he himself is black.
I have spent the entire semester talking, admonishing, setting examples, and doing everything possible to let him know that it is not acceptable, that it is an ugly term no matter who uses it.
Yes, it takes time. Yes, it is very frustrating. I am able to keep fighting the battle because no matter what, I know that I am doing the right thing. I recently found out that the rest of my students (black and white) respect me for it.
My friends know not to tell me racist jokes anymore. Yes, it makes for uncomfortable silences when one doesn't laugh at one of these jokes, but it drives the message home.
What can we do? Discuss racism when it comes up in class, SET AN EXAMPLE, and remember, the students look to us to do the right thing. It may help in a small way, but it still helps.

thanks for letting me "vent"