Friday, November 27, 2009


I never thought I’d be like this. Well, that’s not true. Either way -- here I am -- scrutinizing the work my child brings home from school. Part of it is that Zander was able to do so many truly rich, open-ended projects at his small, somewhat alternative preschool and I'm snooty about the one-dimensional and traditional work he brings home from kindergarten. Another part is my background in women’s issues, which trained me to look closely at cultural messages. And still another part is living IN THE 21ST CENTURY.

Anyway, Zander came home with this 'cut-and-glue' project the day before before Thanksgiving:

Let’s take a closer look at the pictures, shall we?

First, the smiling Native American woman (I assume she is Native American because of the feather in her hair) who appears just thrilled to be harvesting something for the a white pilgrim's Thanksgiving? Alternatively, she might be a pilgrim who is just wearing a feather in her hair. Come to think of it, that must be it since Native Americans didn't celebrate Thanksgiving.

Here's what really throws me though...the woman in the "Thanksgiving Today" frame is clearly the same woman (sans feather)!

Next, let's look at the frame of the men and boy sitting in front of the TV presumably watching football also in "Thanksgiving Today." Hello? Stereotype much? Maybe they're actually watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!

And while I'm at it, who sets the table with the knife on the left and the fork on the right? Heathens!


Nylonthread said...

When Rosie was in Kindergarten she brought these cut-color-paste things home EVERY DAY. OMG she was painfully bored!! If I could have a do-over, I would have chosen a different teacher for K. She was so very badly matched last year. Thank goodness for creative teachers who give rich open-ended projects!!

JCB said...

Yup, he comes home with them almost every day. It's such a shame. Glad to hear that it has gotten better for Rosie!

Kelly O said...

I totally concur with your observations. All of them. Especially the table-setting one. WTF?

JCB said...

Thanks Kelly. Glad to hear it's not just me. I've been wondering what some of the other families in our somewhat ethnically-diverse school must think.