from the life of a teacher

Week 8 February 24, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — amaliskas1234 @ 11:10 pm

One hope that I have in regards to working with children and families who come from diverse backgrounds is that others will be able to put aside their individual biases, prejudices, and differences to work as a team to provide a better world for our children. I hope that we as adults can put aside our differences in order to better teach young children about the significance of embracing diversity and building each other up instead of tearing people down.

One goal I would like to set for the early childhood field related to issues of diversity, equity, and social justice would be for early childhood professionals to better implement these topics into their everyday curriculum. Along with this I would like to challenge early childhood professionals to be more open to talking about aspects of diversity with families and colleagues instead of fearing the differences it may bring up. Through these conversations may we hope to really learn and grow from one another.

I have thoroughly enjoyed working alongside each of you. You all have much to be proud of. Thank you for sharing your experiences and knowledge so generously. It is a pleasure to work alongside such dedicated professionals. I look forward to working with each of you again in the future. I am grateful for the insights that each of you have shared and imparted on me. I hope that I was able to share some insights with you. Thank you for all you have shared with me!


Week 7 February 18, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — amaliskas1234 @ 2:05 am

You are working in an early childhood setting of your choice— a child care center You receive word that the child of a family who has recently emigrated from a country you know nothing about will join your group soon. You want to prepare yourself to welcome the child and her family. Luckily, you are enrolled in a course about diversity and have learned that in order to support families who have immigrated you need to know more than surface facts about their country of origin.

The Family I am working with has recently emigrated from the country of Finland.

Ways in which I will prepare myself to be culturally responsive towards this family:

1. I would first research about the country of Finland using this website:

I would look to see what language is spoken in Finland. I would look to gain information about some of their cultural traditions and customs.

2. I would go to my local library and check out some children’s books on Finland to show other children pictures of the countries the family is coming from.

3. Recheck the center and classrooms to make sure we have culturally diverse play toys, books, pictures, and other materials to welcome this family.

4. I would research if there were any agencies or organizations that might be helpful to this family such as housing, food credits, immigrant support groups, etc.

5.  Look into seeing if any forms the center uses would need to be translated by a translator for the parents to comprehend if the family does not speak English.

6. Brainstorm with colleagues on how we can be welcoming as a center to the family and help to make the transition a smooth one.

7. I would find a child in the class the new student would be entering to act as a friend the first few days. I would encourage this child to make sure the other child is included or has someone to sit with at lunch or during activities.

I hope that these preparations will benefit both the family and I as well a the center as a whole. One of my biggest hopes is that I can teach the children in the center about the country the family is coming from. My intentions in this is to help the children be more welcoming to the family. I also hope that the family will see us as welcoming and feel comfortable with us in such a big transition.


Week 6 – Experiencing prejudice February 11, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — amaliskas1234 @ 3:20 pm

Most recently I have experienced great amount of prejudice that was disheartening. A few months ago my husband and I were in the process of adopting our first child. We had always planned to adopt after we had children, but when it looked as though biological children were not a possibility we began our journey of adoption. We are amazingly excited and felt as though we were expecting our own child, but just not sure when. Unfortunately when others found out that we were not specifying a specific race or ethnicity we faced some bias and prejudice from others. People thought they had the right to voice their opinion in our plans. People did not agree with our to adopt and not pursue fertility treatments. Further, it was disheartening to see people so against us adopting a child from another race or ethnicity.

It blew my mind that people thought women should spend more heart ache and time doing treatments to their body instead of pursuing adoption for the millions of children in need of a loving home. Or to see that others would think a child born to a mother who was unable to care for the child did not deserve a loving family. Likewise, that a child of a different race was not deserving to become apart of a loving family that did not share that same race. There is something that is so completely unfair about that.

This incident brought a lot of emotions into my life. I felt frustrated at people I thought knew me, upset that others had a problem with my choices, disappointed that people could be so mean, lonely like I was the only one facing the situation. When I wanted to be rejoicing I felt like the opinions of others were taking away my joy.

I think the only way this incident could turn into an opportunity for greater equity would be for the people who were so against it to have a change of heart. My husband and I have already decided that after our miracle child that we are expecting is born we will continue with our adoption journey. We hope this will allow others to fall in love with our child and see that it does not matter if he was born in my stomach or my heart , but that they matter!