FM Silver Medal Award Winner

Image created by Emmett Jack Lundberg

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Self-Determination Beyond Gender Norms

Young Teachers Collective

By: Elijah Eiler

“Mr. E, when are you going to cut your hair?”

A student of mine in seventh grade looked at me, half laughing, half not, not meaning to make a joke but just asking an honest question.

“What?” I said, returning his half laugh and pushing my bangs back. “I like my hair.”

In an attempt to have long hair (because, well, why not?) I haven’t cut my hair since August. The light brown mop on my head has finally grown past what I’ve dubbed the Awkward Middle-Length Period to the Okay-Looking Middle-Length Period. But even though my hair isn’t yet long enough to be pulled back, it’s still too long to fit into my student’s image of what a male teacher should look like.

“When I first met you, I wasn’t sure if you were a girl or a boy because of your voice,” he said a…

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Boys Can’t Wear Pink? All Girls Want to be Princesses? 20 Kids’ Books That Redefine What’s ‘Normal’

From an early age kids are bombarded with messages that rigidly define gender: Boys like pirates and sports and being rough, and girls are sweet princesses who love all things pink and sparkles. Even many children’s books still promote harmful gender stereotypes for both boys and girls; limiting how they play, dress, and express themselves. …

Source: Boys Can’t Wear Pink? All Girls Want to be Princesses? 20 Kids’ Books That Redefine What’s ‘Normal’

Friday Fodder: Raising Rainbows Scholarship

Consider supporting this scholarship fund.

Raising My Rainbow

During my travels around the nation speaking to different groups and organizations, I fell in love with a school in Greenfield, Massachusetts. The Center School is a progressive, independent day school that offers rigorous education for deep thinkers and creative spirits. Seriously, everything about the school and its community of faculty, staff, students and parents have me enraptured and wishing that C.J. could go to The Center School or a school like it.

The school has become a safe haven for gender creative kiddos. As of next year, the school will have four transgender and two gender non-conforming students and a gender creative staff member. How cool is that? Even cooler? They just launched a Raising Rainbows Scholarship in my honor.

The Center School’s Raising Rainbows scholarship, established in 2015, provides tuition support for Center School students who are transgender, gender nonconforming, gender creative, or who have family members…

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