January 14, 2008

Walk a Little Taller

Posted in Diversity, Selection at 6:07 pm by maf

Thank you all for a great class Saturday.

Today, I:

  • firmed up the assignment due dates as we agreed
  • updated the agenda to reflect what we did – which was everything
  • reflected about things I wish I had said, which I plan to blog about (but not today)
  • wrote my Teaching Philosophy (for the award nomination) – this might explain some crazy things I do, if you’re interested
  • checked the Exhibition topics so far. So far, so good!

Some great questions came up during Group Time Saturday. I will blog separately about each of those that need sharing with the whole class.

Finally for today, I would like to share something I heard yesterday in a sermon. The topic was actually Harriet Tubman. Did you know (I didn’t!) that she was hit in the forehead with a heavy piece of lead while enslaved, and as a result she suffered from daily sleeping fits for the rest of her life? She would be doing something or talking to someone and just fall over, asleep. What a handicap that must have been, making her accomplishments seem all the more heroic. (This is the kind of detail that kids love to hear about, by the way.)
Anyway, there’s a museum in Macon called the Tubman African American Museum. Many school children have visited it for field trips over the years. A sign near the door says:

Some people leave here walking a little taller.

It occurred to me that this is an important reason for us to “diversify” our collections, as we discussed on Saturday. Regardless what the diversity itself may be, our students need to see themselves in school library materials – so that they can “walk a little taller.” This principle has guided media material selection for many years, but I particularly like the way the Tubman sign expresses it.