Essential Questions for to chew on . . .
In what ways are the 5 areas of the culture of
power relevant to life in schools?
What are the educational implications of power
How can we stop training teachers to expect less
of certain children?
Skills? Whole Language? Workshop? Phonemic Awareness? Black? White? UGH!!!
A little bit of
Remember, this is a
course about the
philosophical roots of
Delpit emerged during the
“great Ebonics debate;
Dr. Ernie Smith- Ebonics and
The Afrikan Tongue (it is really
interesting from an historical
point of view); please watch the
Please read Delpit’s bio.
need to understand
where we have been
so as to know where
we are going
Recall a time in your life when you felt that you
were left out of a secret. When you were left
out of something that everyone else, but you,
Do Blacks and Whites and Others see the world of
In other words: Do Blacks and Whites approach
teaching and learning differently?
What are the common grounds?
A Black Educator in a White World?
A White Educator in a White Word?
What are the differences between the two? What is
Delpit’s position on the two?
• OK, WE ALL HAVE BEEN RAISED OUR WHOLE LIVES TO BE “RACE NEUTRAL” IN ONE WAY OR
•HOWEVER, DELPIT’S ARTICLE, IN SOME WAYS, IS A VICIOUS ATTACK ON THE “WHITE WAY” OF
KNOWING THE WORLD. DELPIT POINTS OUT TO THE READER THAT WE (COLLEGE PROFESSORS &
TEACHERS) HAVE BEEN SOOOOOO “VYGOTSKIED” OUT THAT WE THINK ALL PEOPLE LEARN BY:
COOPERATION, EXPLORING, DOING, ETC. . . .
•DELPIT IS LIKE A SLEDGE HAMMER THAT SCREAMS, “WHAT ABOUT TEACHING KIDS
How do you feel
about this issue?
What is Delpit
challenging us to see?
Are you mad when
you read her? If yes,
you might not like
what she has to say
because she is
Do children of different races learn differently?
Where have you seen each of these aspects?
What the heck does power have to do with skills vs. process instruction?
Do you see the five points Delpit talks about?
“I want the same thing for everyone
else’s children as I want for mine”
Parents outside of the culture of
power often want something else:
“My kids know how to be black – you
all teach them how to be successful in
the white man’s world.”
“Child-centered, whole language,
and process approached are needed
in order to allow a democratic state
of free, empowered adults, and
because research has shown that
children learn best through these
Teachers do students no service to
suggest that product is not
important. They will be judged on
their product, regardless the
process, in life.
“Children have the right to their
own language, their own culture.
We must fight cultural hegemony
and fight the system by insisting that
children be allowed to express
themselves in their own language
“It’s really a shame that she seems
to be so authoritarian, so focused
on skills and so teacher directed.
Those poor kids never seem to be
allowed to really express their
We must accept students but also
take responsibility to teach them.
Tell students that their language and
cultural style is unique and
wonderful but that there is a
political power game in America –
they have to access the power codes.
Different cultures address each other
in different styles. Take Shirley
Brice Heath’s study, “What no
bedtime story means” for example.
We can’t judge one culture by the
values of our own.
Please read this excerpt from. . .