Teachers Address Derek Chauvin’s Guilty Verdict

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Teachers Address Derek Chauvin’s Guilty Verdict

“We don’t teach any of these things in a vacuum,” she said. “The idea of critical thinking is that you are always critical thinking and making thes

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“We don’t teach any of these things in a vacuum,” she said. “The idea of critical thinking is that you are always critical thinking and making these connections to other texts, in your life, in the news, in politics. ”

Zachary Gosse, a high school special education teacher in Long Island, N.Y., focused his conversations with students on Darnella Frazier, a teenager who filmed the murder and upended the police department’s highly misleading initial description of Floyd’s death.

“If you were in that situation, would you be willing to stand up?” Gosse said he asked his students.

Jasmine Hobson Rodriguez, who teaches English to high school juniors in Hesperia, Calif., structured her Black History month curriculum around police brutality and racial justice, inspired by the George Floyd protests. She structured the project around the theme “The Art of Resistance” and asked: How can social justice or standing up for a cause be beautiful or artistic?

On Wednesday, she will return to their work to help them think through the moment. Some students painted Floyd. Others analyzed songs about police brutality or made websites to collect petitions. Like Beenen and countless other teachers across the country, she will open the floor: How do you feel? What do you think?

“I will make sure my kids have the space to talk about what they want to talk about, or not,” she said. “And then, we’re going to go back to reading ‘The Great Gatsby.’”

From Opinion: “Students need a way of thinking, not a series of conclusions,” Esau McCaulley, a professor at Wheaton College, wrote in an essay for The Times. “But I also believe that students deserve the truth as charitably and carefully as I can deliver it. To ignore these issues is a privilege too many of my Black and brown students lack.

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