In the Spotlight
The Wesley School is committed to enriching its commitments to anti-bias pedagogy throughout the school: helping children to learn more about the multiple aspects of their identity, to communicate and collaborate while honoring those differences in background and perspective, and to engage as active citizens in our school community and the world. One of the tools we are using is called the “Anti-Bias Framework,” which was developed by experts in conjunction with Teaching Tolerance. The Anti-Bias framework outlines developmentally appropriate student learning goals across the grade levels in the areas of identity, diversity, justice, and action. Currently, all of our teachers are reviewing their curricula using this framework as an organizer, in order to take stock of our current practices in these areas, to collect helpful resources and share promising practices, and to identify goals for continued growth.
In conjunction with this effort, teachers are engaging in regular meetings and a variety of professional development activities to advance their own identity development, cultural proficiency, and professional practice to support their work with children in the months and years to come. For example, at the end of January, the full faculty (including staff) spent a productive afternoon in a workshop, “Exploring K-8 Classroom Practice with a Multicultural Lens,” led by Monique Marshall from the Wildwood Outreach Center. This workshop helped develop teachers’ conceptual understanding of identity and culture, provided a personal opportunity for teachers to reflect on their own identity formation, and also introduced a range of research- and experience-based practices for teachers to explore these important areas with their students.
You will continue to hear more from us as this process unfolds.