With the news surrounding the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination and the allegations of sexual assault by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, sexual assault and consent have been on the forefront of many conversations–not only with adults but also with children and teens.
For many, the idea of consent is incredibly straightforward. For others, it is a gray area that they struggle with. Regardless of where you stand, the idea of consent and what it truly means is incredibly vital to understand. Liz Kleinrock, a 3rd-grade teacher at Citizens of the World Charter School Silver Lake in Los Angeles understands how important it is to grasp the idea of “consent,” especially at a young age.
I think whenever I tend to look at things spiraling in society, particularly political events that are going on, I like to think about what kind of foundational skills should have been in place earlier to prevent these things from happening.
While some believe 3rd-grade may be too young to be teaching consent, Kleinrock kept the examples at an appropriate level, not mentioning sex once. Instead, she mentioned things 3rd graders usually do–hugging, borrowing things, secrets, sharing, touching another person, and even kissing.
Kleinrock also made sure to give examples of what consent sounds like, and what it doesn’t sound like, to ensure all students fully understand.
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Everything about Kavanaugh in the news has been making me HEATED. So whenever I get frustrated about the state of our country, it inspires me to proactively teach my kids to DO BETTER. Today was all about CONSENT. We even explored the grey areas, like if someone says “yes” but their tone and body language really says “no.” Role playing is a great way to reinforce these skills, but they MUST be taught explicitly!
People on Instagram were impressed and grateful to see that educators are making sure that the next generation will be informed and enlightened, to become better citizens tomorrow. Many thanked Kleinrock for her impressive chart and for teaching her students the right way.
Kleinrock has a background in social justice education and was one of the winners of the 2018 Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Teaching Tolerance project. Her Instagram account is filled with other informative and insightful charts and activities that any teacher in today’s political climate would enjoy.
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#repost of one of my favorite anchor charts for the beginning of the school year! Before diving into issues around race, gender, religion, and others, it’s important to clarify for students that these concepts are all socially constructed for specific reasons and purposes. Who stands to benefit from keeping these social categories intact? Who is oppressed? How are these concepts created, and by whom? Why does knowing that these are socially constructed ideas even matter when studying history and our communities?