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Diversity... the subject came up again.

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  1. #1
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    Diversity... the subject came up again.

    I hope no one minds me posting here. DS is 5 1/2... past the BB Parenting age 3-5 and Schoolage BB is very slow. I am finding it quite interesting how DS has very little concept of diversity. So it started out with the do men marry men question which I posted earlier and would have loved to respond to in a more open way.

    Anyhows I was told by a teacher who used to teach at DS school (she also happens to have a DD in DS class and the Mom is my friend) that there are no male couples with children at the school but there could have certainly been a child at camp with 2 Dads. The school tries to maintain diversity racially, economically, and ethnically but still not much opportunity.

    So on to diversity. Race came up this am as DS is finishing his pancakes and he is watching Caillou (I know... the whiny kid cartoon... but he loves it!) Caillous meets a little boy that is deaf and Caillou doesn't know what deaf is and he learns. So DS sees the end of the cartoon and we start talking.

    DS: You know what?
    ME: What? (thinking it is gonna be a thought about how kids are deaf)
    DS: Girls have brownish skin.
    ME: Oh? They do?
    DS: Yes.
    ME: And how do you know that? Did your teacher tell you? Or did your counselor tell you? (just wondering where he got the info)
    DS: No, I just know that. There's a girl with brownish skin at camp named Ariel.
    ME: Well what about boys? Do they have brownish skin? (just checking to make sure he is not confusing gender and race-LOL!)
    DS: Yes, boys have brownish skin too. There is a boy name Aaron and he has brownish skin.
    ME: Well what color is your skin? (just want to know if he is aware of his own. Never really discussed skin color. He has been pretty oblivious up to this point)
    DS: I am white.
    ME: Well are there kids that are purple and green? (this is me being goofy and DS doesn't even realize it. He thinks we are having a serious discussion)
    DS: No, just yellow and black. I mean yellow and brown.
    ME: Oh, ok. So do you know any kids that are yellow?
    DS: No. (there are in fact 3 Asian children in DS Pre-K class)

    I tried to be non-chalant and DS was pretty non-chalant about it too. After the cartoon and our little talk he said he was going to color Doras' bow pink! I guess he knows something. Just funny to see how their little minds work. What is your kids concept of race?
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    Mia has lots of friends who were also born in Guatemala plus we are in a very diverse community and school system - so she sees and is friends with kids with all shades of skin - African anmerican. latin. asian, etc.. She seems to notice that she has brown skin and last year when she was into the Princesses she said she liked Jasmine the best because she has brown skin. We also are members of the Jewish mulitracial network - so she sees kids who are Jewish like her, have varying shades of brown skin like her - and many even have two moms or two dads - so the race thing, so far is not an issue. i am constantly reminding myself that one day she will not be sheltered by the umbrella of our white privilege and wonder how that will be for her....

    Mom to Mia
    born Guatemala 4/2/2000
    home to Boston 7/5/2001

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    DS sees all different races in our community, too. His English preschool teacher is African American and the Spanish teacher is Latino. I quiz him to make sure he knows which teacher is which. Mainly I ask which teacher speaks to him in Spanish and which one speaks to him in English.

    The other day he told me the English teacher said thus and so etc. I asked him what she looked like and he said her skin was dark brown. Apparently black hasn't hit him yet.

    DS has friends where the mommy is "lilly white" (she's from Canada) and she has 2 kids who are the same. But the Daddy is Latino and his son (from a previous marriage) is dark, like my DS. He only has made the remark once that Eric and Roger (the father and son) have the same skin color as DS.

    Our community is all colors. We even have a Korean school down the street and he knows that the kids who go there are Korean and speak a different language, just like DS speaks a different language, too

    And I don't think any child would KNOW that Asians are considered yellow (which I never understood, they, as a people are not yellow).

    For more diversity, Maya and Miguel (on PBS) is nice. They speak Spanish and English (mainly English), they are Latino (obviously) but have friends (boy and girl) of all races and there is a kid who only has 1 arm but play basket ball.

    It's geared for pre-teens, but it's a cartoon and DS learns that all people have to figure out their solutions to their problems

    DS's preschool just had a couple weeks of learning about kids with disabilities. He has a girl in his class who is physically challenged and she fits in the class just fine. I don't know much about her (privacy ya know) but I think she can't verbalize. They also had a guest speaker come in who has cerebral palsy (an adult) and he teaches karate to kids. He has now signed on and is going to teach once a week to the kids karate.

    Just out of curiousity, when you asked him if any kids were yellow, did you mean YELLOW (like you meant green and purple) or did you mean Asian?

    I think you can find diversity anywhere you are. Dora the Explorer is diverse to some extent, there are all kinds of books. Even Sesame street shows all kinds of diversity (and always have)


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