Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Social Justice Event

Last week I attended a social justice event hosted by Leslie Grinner.  She is the creator of the SCWAMP theory. To refresh ya’ll memory, SCWAMP means Straight, Christian, White, Able-bodied, Male and Property Holding. She defines this as an outline to view the ideas that is presented through the media.  For example, the hit saga “Twilight”, Grinner notices S.C.W.A.M.P. 

Straightness: Heterosexuality is a norm in this film just like other films
Christianity: Edward best embodies the Christian ethos. Ironically, vampires are soulless and damned creature.
Whiteness: Whiteness is valued and standard superiority. Bella is the whitest person in this film and desired by boys of every racial group. The Volturi family are the most powerful vampires in the world, resides in Italy, all white and they don’t even look Italian.
Able-bodiedness: Creatures with superpower means physical abilities is valued. It is all about saving Bella. Jacob’s father, Billy, is the only physically disabled person in the film.
Maleness: They story is two guys fighting for one girl. Bella basically gives up everything to have a relationship. Edward is able to remain in his nuclear family unit and does not require sacrificing anything as Bella must do to be with him.
Property Holding: Twilight is heavily inscribed with class. Bella family is a working class and Bella chose Edward whom is high class.
In relation to the social event, in Johnson’s article, “Privilege, Power, and Difference”, she believes that privilege, power, and difference need to be talked about. That was what Grinner did in her presentation. Grinner notes that Edward is seen as a privilege white individual who comes from a wealthy family. His family is made up of vampires. I think Grinner said all of the vampires are wealthy. The Volturi family in Italy is another example of wealth. In the other hand, you have  Jacob whom is a Native American who is less privileged. You then notice that Bella is attracted to the privileged person.
Another article that relates is McIntosh’s “White Privilege Knapsack”.  McIntosh believes that whiteness overpowers all the other races. In Twilight, whiteness hold all the power. Edward’s family and the Volturi family are prime examples of white privileged. Even Grinner notes that Bella, the pale awkward, anemic white girl, walks into the Forks school as the most popular girl. Everybody wants to get to know her. Grinner notices that colored people in the film are portrayed very stereotypically.  The Asian male taking photographs was an example Grinner gave. I do not think an Asian with a camera is stereotypical.
Lastly, another article that relates is Christensen’s “Unlearning the Myths That Bind Us”. Christensen believes that there is a secret education. (This is my sister’s opinion and not Grinner’s). With the success of Twilight, media gives off a feeling that Stephanie Meyers is brainwashing little girls in America. It teaches our girls that the only safe sex is sex within marriage and that all other sex is potentially deadly. Bella must wait until she is married and have become a vampire in order to have. Of course, Bella wants to have sex before she marries Edward, but sex with Edward will kill her since he is not human and she is just a weak human being.  She becomes pregnant and it almost kills her. (Do not ask me how I know this…my sister told me!) It’s a hidden message but I think Meyers didn’t mean to put it in. In addition, I remember that Grinner said that the book give off a feeling that domestic violence is okay. She said that the Native American girl, Emily received a hideous scar from her lover yet she still love him.
This social justice event made me think of how SCWAMP plays a part of media represents itself. Everything you see in the media has a hidden message.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Shor's Education is Politics

This week post is based on an article called Education is Politics by Ira Shor. This week post is gonna be different from what I normally post. I’m going to jot down some quotes and about it. Wow…I’m so excited…LOL…here we go now…

I. “For this empowering pedagogy, I will propose an agenda of values, each to be discussed in detail, which describe it as:
Shor proposes a agenda to maintain a empowering pedagogy. While I agree with most of the described steps, I am not sure about the desocializing part of the agenda. From what I’ve learned, is to not fall into stereotypes and land somewhere in the social area of a classroom. I attempt to create a duel identity that can be used in and out of the classroom which allows for both educational and social happiness at once…

II. "In school and society, the lack of meaningful participation alienates workers, teachers, and students. This alienation lowers their productivity in class and on the job. I think of this lowered productivity as a performance strike, an unorganized mass refusal to perform well, an informal and unacknowledged strike." (pg.20)
As many can tell, I don’t like to talk in class and I think that participation isn’t the only way to determines students learning. I feel that group discussion is a good alternative, but there are other ways the students can show they are learning the subject. Everyone has a voice that should be heard but if a student is uncomfortable then they should have the time to warm up to the students and teacher.

III. “Situated, multicultural pedagogy increases the chance that students will feel ownership in their education and reduces the conditions that produce their alienation. In the case of women, minorities and  non-elite whites, who comprise the majority of students, democratic education should reflect their culture, conditions, needs, and history. Doing so will encourage their participation in intellectual study. But participation is a means, not an end, in this program for empowering education. There is a challenging goal to the participatory process I am suggesting: to discover the limits and resources for changing self and society.” (51)
Students that have a foreign language as their first language come into schools and already feel alienated because they don't speak the language that everyone else is speaking. If teachers bring the language into the classroom then the students wouldn't feel so alienated and they would feel welcomed and want to participate instead of not wanting to talk at all.

(Am I doing this type of post correctly? …Iunno…I’m in a rush to get to a family Easter dinner…DEUCES)
I don't like this article...it's weird

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Reconceptualizing Down Syndrome

"It's not like they come here to be labeled, or to believe the label. We're all here, kids, teachers, parents, whoever, it's all about us working together"
   I really enjoyed reading this article. In the article, “Citizenship in School: Reconceptualizing Down Syndrome” Christopher Kliewer claims that each individual child with down syndrome is different.  Yet they put all the children that have down syndrome together in one special classroom. They all have different learning and thought process. Kliewer says that children with disabilities should be incorporated into the regular classroom. The article really got into detail about incorporating disabled children into a regular classroom. This enables the children with the disability to be viewed as normal. It give the regular children the chance to look at the children with disabilities as one of them and not a special education child. I really think it is a great idea.  
   I remember when I was in high school, I had a friend who was disabled but he didn’t have down syndrome though. Anyways, he told people that before he came to Classical, it was either be separated from the regulars or with the regulars. He chose being with the regulars. Everything turned out fine for him and everybody welcomed him with open arms. I think Kliewer ideas it is already starting to be put in action already. Integrating a special needs child into a regular classroom can be a challenge, and may not work for some children though I feel everybody should deserve a shot.
Should Kliewr idea be put into action or no?
(Sorry this post is kinda short compared to others but I maybe will come back and edit it...)