america

Desegregating Play

Desegregating Play

This week, as we recall the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., segregation is at the top of my mind. During the era of formalized segregation in pre-Civil Rights Movement America segregation was maintained through “whites only” signs at pools, restaurants, and parks, as well as “Sundown” laws and Redlining in American towns and cities. While the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 has made explicit segregation illegal, de facto segregation remains.

Even though most White people would never say something like, “I don’t want my children to play with poor black kids,” the way their neighborhoods, schools, and extracurricular activities are set up achieve this same effect.

Learning Identity and Tolerance from Holiday Traditions

Learning Identity and Tolerance from Holiday Traditions

America is such a large country that it’s easy to forget that there is a world outside of it. American culture and media have seeped into other countries and we can begin to believe that our traditions are universal, when in fact, they are very particular to our time and place.

The problem comes when kids grow up thinking “My tradition is the correct way” instead of “my tradition is one of many different traditions. My tradition can be special to me, but I can also recognize that other peoples’ traditions are special, too.”

Ask Kids and Race: What Do I Tell My Kid About Thanksgiving?

Ask Kids and Race: What Do I Tell My Kid About Thanksgiving?

Dear Kids & Race: My preschooler is asking questions about Thanksgiving. What should I tell him?

This is a great question. When most of us were growing up, we learned a lot of inaccurate stories about Native Americans. We learned, for example, that the Pilgrims were good, albeit hapless, people fleeing religious persecution who survived their first winter in Massachusetts due to friendship with the Wampanoag, most notably Squanto.

Kids & Race Pick of the Week: America’s Musical Journey 3D

Kids & Race Pick of the Week: America’s Musical Journey 3D

“America’s Musical Journey 3D” provides a refreshing take on America’s musical history. While many of the narratives that my generation learned about American music focused on White performers like Elvis, this film gives a broad (but concise) overview of many of the different people who helped create the “American” styles of music--jazz, rock, country, and hip hop.

Why I Was Disappointed in "To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before"

Why I Was Disappointed in "To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before"

When I finally saw To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, Netflix’s highly-anticipated teen rom-com adaptation of Jenny Han’s 2014 novel of the same name, I did not fall in love. Instead, I felt a growing unease that left me feeling incredibly uncomfortable by the supposed “happily ever after” conclusion of the film.