Monday, October 27, 2014

Rodriguez: Sacrificing private identity for public identity

The main idea of this article is about Rodriguez and his experience when it came to bilingual education.  Richard Rodriguez, a native Spanish speaker, experienced having his educators telling him that he had to learn English.  Rodriguez points out throughout his article how people who are native Spanish speakers are forced to the  "American way" of the English language.  The quotes listed below are symbolic to to the concepts that Rodriguez is explaining in this article.  Language and education should not have a battle between the two, no matter if someone is a native Spanish or English speaker, we are all equal.

Quotes I chose;

“Those gringo sounds they uttered startled me. Pushed me away. In that moment of trivial misunderstanding and profound insight, I felt my throat twisted by unsounded grief”. (35)

"Children lose a degree of individuality assimilated into public society" (38)

“I would have been happier about my public success had I not sometimes recalled what it had been like earlier, when my family had conveyed it’s intimacy through a set of conveniently private sounds.” (38) 

“I easily noted the difference between classroom language and the language of home. At school, words were directed to a general audience of listeners.”

“that while one suffers a diminished sense of private individuality by becoming assimilated into public society, such assimilation makes possible the achievement of publicindividuality”(39).

Quotes/pictures/videos from other student's blogs:

“Without question, it would have pleased me to hear my teachers address me in Spanish when I entered the classroom. I would have felt much less afraid. I would have trusted them and responded with ease.” (Dennis's Blog )

"I remember on my first day of first grade, I was seated next to an unfamiliar face. I looked at the boy's name tag on his desk and saw that his name was Achille. As I tried to speak to him and get to know him better, I realized that he became overwhelmed and began to cry. I later in the day found out that he was a new student from France and that he knew no English. As the year went on, he became more familiar with the English language, he accounted it to the fact that his parents also made an effort to speak English at home. Within a couple years of being at our school he became fluent in English and even admitted to not remembering a lot of French. It was apparent, that that much like Rodriguez that even though he knew that he needed to speak English to be successful in America, he passionately missed his French roots." (Erika's connection post)

"Between his private and public life, Rodriguez was uncertain with who he was. Rodriguez argues, "while one suffers a diminished sense of private individuality by becoming assimilated into public society, such assimilation makes possible the achievement of public individuality (39)" (Cindy's blog)

"I believe that is the point Rodriguez is trying to make, no matter where you go, never lose your roots and never forget what you have already learned. With the way the world is constantly changing, being bilingual is truly a gift, and is needed more and more in the work force of today. " (Branden's blog)

Rodriguez closes the article by summarizing that "bilingual educators say that children lose a degree of 'individuality' by becoming assimilated into public society. But the bilinguists simplisticlaly scorn the value and necessity of assmilation. They do that seem to realize that there are two ways a person is individualized. So they do that realize that while one suffers a diminished sense of private individuality by becoming assimilated into public society, such assimilation makes possible the achievement of public individuality." (Rodriguez, 39) (Lindsey's Blog)

Sunday, October 19, 2014

“In Service of What? The Politics of Service Learning”-Extended Comments

“In Service of What? The Politics of Service Learning” by Joseph Kahne an Joel Westheimer discusses the concept of service learning and how it is beneficial for both the children who are learning and the people, whether they are young adults or older adults, that are teaching these children to better their education and their futures.  This article also discusses how when providing not only service learning but also community service is a great way for people, especially children to get involved in their communities. 

For this blog post I chose to write an extended comments on Cindy’s blog post for “In Service of What? The Politics of Service Learning”.  Cindy begins her post by using this quote from the reading by Joseph Kahne and Joel Westheimer, “Sometimes the most beneficial form of learning comes to us through action.  Service learning allows students to have a more hands-on learning experience and connect what they are being taught in classrooms to the real world events.”.  When reading this quote it was I couldn’t help but agree with this statement.  Just as Cindy stated about this quote, “taking part in a service learning project is eye-opening in many ways”.  Even though I just started my service learning for FNED 346 I have had hands on experience when it comes to teaching and helping children.  For the past year I have worked at Henry Barnard on the Rhode Island College campus as my work-study job.  In a matter of just a year I have helped these children with homework and being there to guide them in their everyday lives.  I have not only gained relationships with these children that have become unbreakable but I have also gained experience when it comes to helping children in the schooling atmosphere.  
Another point that Cindy made was the quote from Erika Lincoln’s blog post.  This quote stated, “Sometimes the most beneficial form of learning comes to us through action. Service learning allows students to have a more hands-on learning experience and connect what they are being taught in classrooms to real world events”.  I completely agree with this stated that Erika made.  Being able to be hands on when it comes to service learning is the most beneficial for both the person learning and also the person being taught.  Although it has only been my third week of service learning at the Asa Messer Elementary School I truly feel that being hands-on in the classroom helps the children better understand the activities that are being presented to them. Just as in Cindy’s blog post, relating her service learning experience to Jonathan Kozol’s article “Amazing Grace”.  Cindy stated, “I am working in a less-privileged classroom and the help I am providing for the students will benefit them with the tools to create a better future.”  I completely agree with Cindy's quote about working in a less-privileged classroom helps to create a better future for these children.
Just as Cindy discussed her personal experiences with community service at Agnes Little Elementary School  I too have had similar experiences with community service.  When I was younger I used to do community service at my old elementary school Blessed Sacrament in Providence RI.  Although Blessed Sacrament is not exactly lik Asa Messer or Agnes Little it is still very different from when I was younger.  Knowing that I was able to help the children in the younger ages was very rewarding.  We are the examples of those who are attending school and learning all the nessacary tools in life, community service plays a huge factor into that.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Unlearning the Myths that Blind Us-Reflection

Unlearning the Myths that Blind Us by Linda Christensen discusses how the concept of Disney and the "secret education", according to Ariel Dorfman, and how these concepts affect how both younger and older men and women act in society.  When thinking of Disney I have always grown up to focus on the "Disney princesses" and how they live such a magical life and fall in love with prince charming who takes them away from their "rags" and brings them to their new found "riches".  Characters such as Ariel, Cinderella and Belle give young girls in society a sense of false hope.  Looking at these characters, or "role models" according to the young girls, the life styles that they are living is far from reality.  The way Disney portrays these princesses is setting unrealistic life goals for these girls and how they should not only live the perfect lifestyle but also to "be perfect" in their appearances and the portrayal of themselves.  Below is a video that I found on Youtube about they "afterlife" of what happens to these said princesses once things become more on the realisitc side for them.

Since a very young age I can strictly remember watching almost every Disney princess movie about a million times each.  When going to school at a younger age the topic of Disney was something that always popped up.  The girls were always focused on finding their "true love" or wanting to look like Cinderella, Ariel or Belle for Halloween and the boys would want to be a superhero such as Superman or Batman.  At a young age little did we know that stereotyping was the basis behind most of the Disney plots.  Almost every princess starts off in their story as coming from pretty much nothing.  Belle, starts off as living in a village with her father who is not the richest man in the town.  She later gains attention from the so called "prince" just because of her beauty.  Her beauty is the only thing that attracts her to Gaston which in all reality, looks are NOT everything.  Having these princesses as so called "role models" creates a different perspective when we become older.  If I had realized how "fairy tales always have a happy ending" is a non exsisting statement than I would have had a different experience while in high school and college.  Both my looks and dating experiences would not be the same as they are now if I had know about these stereotypes.  No one has to be perfect in order to find love and happiness or to be beautiful inside out.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

"Safe Zones"-Gerri August

In the article “Safe Zones” by Gerri August, the topic of bullying within classrooms along with bullying of those in the LGBT community.  In the beginning of the article this quote stuck out to me which said, “classroom walls create an impression of dichotomy, the academic arena within the personal area without”. (83) When it comes to a classroom no one should be bullied for not being able to comprehend certain things that they are learning or because a person is “different” to someone else.  Growing up I have seen several cases of bullying, especially from a young age.  I was one of those kids who unfortunately were a victim of bullying.  From kindergarten until about eighth grade I was friends with a girl who was not the nicest person.  While growing up we had our fair share of being friendly and having good times but when it came down to the reality she was someone who knew how to bully, and unfortunately that kid was me.  She was tease me, call me names, kick me and make jokes about me to the other kids in my classroom.  When we graduated middle school and went on to high school I was able slowly drift away from her, to this day when I see her she still acts the same way just not as intense.  When faced with this bullying it greatly affected my school work and how I interacted with people, hence why I am much more shy person than I used to be when I was younger.  Other experiences that I have not personally gone through but I have witnessed have been in my job in a daycare.  I have seen kids be compleely cruel to each other and singling kids out for no reason.  Situations like this break my heart.  Why is it that making fun of someone for who they do as a person is okay to some people?  Not only myself but also that I know around me think that it is completely wrong.  Bullying is never okay whether you are friends with a person or if you barely know them, it is never ever okay.  

The LGBT community is also very important to me because I have a family member who is part of this community.  When he was younger he just knew that he was different from everyone else and was completely okay about it.  Other people make comments under their breath and think that it is completely okay when in actuality it isn't.  My uncle, sadly, faces bullying even as an adult and has only opened up a bit more over the past few years with certain states becoming open to same sex marriage.  I am a supporter of same-sex marriage and I do not see anything wrong with it at all.  Love isn't about gender it is about the person within.  In today’s society the LGBT community is seen more frequently in movies, TV shows and commercials.  I personally feel that having the LGBT community shown more throughout media is a step in the right direction.  Members of the LGBT community are able to feel more comfortable about who they are.  This can also help in classrooms as well with children who are apart of the LGBT community and to help them feel that they are not different from everyone else.