This post begins the monthly guest education blogger. I want to thank this blogger for their awareness and dedication to integrating diversity in student identities to their conversations in science class.
Teaching Biology Beyond XX and XY
Regardless of what subject you teach, education is, by default, political. As educators, we make choices to expose students to certain information, and it is our responsibility to provide accurate and thorough access to a variety of ideas. We must recognize that students come to us with a wide range of experiences and that all students, regardless of their backgrounds, deserve to be respected and to hear their own stories echoed within the classroom.
In my science classroom, I specifically aim to empower students to become scientifically responsible global citizens who can make educated decisions about their roles in the world. Students will often debate about climate change or the evidence for evolution, but sometimes it is more personal: when learning about heredity, a student might begin to wonder what genetic traits his or her child will have. Continue reading
In the past few years different youth theatre groups, filmmakers, and documentaries have emerged to the masses to better educate and show the lives of LGBTQ youth. Below are 4 must watch documentaries. Some are in the process of being produced. Others are free and available online. Another aspect of all of these shows/films are that the individuals in them are all LGBTQ. Educators take a few moments to watch these and explore how they might be useful in your schools or as a resource for students.
The Year We Though About Love
What happens when a diverse group of LGBTQ youth dares to be “out” on stage to reveal their lives and their loves?
“The Year We Thought About Love” goes behind the scenes of one of the oldest queer youth theaters in America, with our camera crew slipping into classrooms, kitchens, subways, and rehearsal rooms with this fearless and endearing troupe. Boston-based True Colors: OUT Youth Theater transforms daily struggles into performance for social change. With, candor, and attitude, our cast of characters captivates audiences surprised to hear such stories in school settings. Our film introduces a transgender teenager kicked out of her house, a devout Christian challenging his church’s homophobia, and a girl who prefers to wear boys’ clothing even as she models dresses on the runway. When bombs explode outside their building, the troupe becomes even more determined to share their stories of love to help heal their city.”
Source: The Year We Thought About Love
“Passing” profiles the lives of three men of colour who have undergone gender transition from female to male. The film explores what life is like living as a black man when no one knows you are transgender and how each of them now, perceives their own journey with gender after many years of being interacted with by the world as a biological man.”
Source: “Passing” INDIEGOGO Campaign
“Laverne Cox Presents: The T Word” takes viewers inside the challenging and inspiring lives of seven transgender youths from across the country. Learn their incredible stories, and how their determination to live an authentic life is helping them become the person they are truly meant to be. Emmy-nominated actress and transgender advocate Laverne Cox serves as executive producer and host of this moving and thought-provoking documentary.”
Source: Taken from MTV Website
Source: Brothers Series
As we approach the end of 2014 I’m beginning a few projects for this blog. The first one will be a tips for those who work with youth on how to create a more inclusive classroom for kids who are of trans experience. To be clear I’m using the word Trans to include individuals who are genderqueer, gender variant, transgender, transexual, gender neutral, two-spirit, feminine of center, masculine of center, etc…
I’ll take this moment to highlight something. As a special educator the students I work with in the past are used to being defined by their disability. I don’t agree with this use of language and therefore use people first language. I’ll be doing the same thing when talking about young people who are of trans experience. I feel that this is an important aspect of language because someone may have this experience, but it does not completely define them.
On to the first tip! Continue reading