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132. A Framework for Teaching Structural Racism in US History with Ayo Magwood M.Sc.

by Lindsay Lyons
September 12th 2023
In today's episode with special guest and educator Ayo Magwood, M.Sc., Lindsay discusses a framework for teaching stru... More
Listeners. This is gonna be a great show. Io Magwood MS C, founder of Uprooting inequity. LLC specializes in evidence-based alit and solutionary training and understanding and remediating structural racism. She is passionate about fostering cross different cooperation towards realizing equal opportunity for all her superpower is her ability to synthesize a wide range of research, data, primary sources and abstract concepts and weave them into engaging narratives and diagrams. I was recently recognized as a leading expert on social justice education. She has a B A from Brown University and a Master's in Science and Applied Economics from Cornell You University. Now I have used a lot of what I always has taught me in my own practice and I have to say it is brilliant. I cannot wait for you to hear from her. Here we go. I'm educational justice coach, Lindsay Lyons. And here on the time for teacher podcast, we learn how to inspire educational innovation for racial and gender justice design curricula grounded in student voice and build capacity for shared leadership. I'm a former teacher leader turned instructional coach.

I'm striving to live a life full of learning, running, baking, traveling and parenting because we can be rockstar educators and be full human beings if you're a principal, assistant superintendent, curriculum director, instructional coach or teacher who enjoys nerd out about co creating curriculum with students. I made this show for you. Here we go. I welcome to the time for a teacher shift podcast. I'm so glad you're here. Oh, thank you for inviting me. I'm excited. Yes. And so I cannot wait for our conversation. We're just gonna kind of dive in here. We were just talking before we hit record. Normally, the first question I ask is, you know, what do we want able to keep in mind as we jump into our conversation? And you were telling me about an election unit, you taught that was not actually about candidates but about kind of what people needed to know to understand what was going on. And I just thought that was brilliant. Do you mind starting there and just talking to us about that unit? Sure. So I had a, it started because I had a um student debate on affirmative action. And of course, I understand that people have different positions on it, uh uh ideological position.

So I was prepared for that, but I was not prepared for the uh a lot of the reasoning behind uh both arguments. Actually, they were uh very uninformed, they were coming, this repeating sound bites often. Um And reflecting on it, I realized that they were missing uh a lot of historical context and, and, and contemporary uh demographic and, and socioeconomic content. Um, and then I wasn't teaching it and even though I'm a US history teacher, I, I somehow just assumed they knew it and, and, well, I was teaching a more traditional uh curriculum and of course, it, it has, it contains very little uh historical uh uh history on the anti-black racism, you know, a typical um US history class. There's not a lot uh beyond uh the, you know, after the civil rights uh uh movement, then, then you, they jump to Obama's. So and red lining is maybe mentioned very briefly. Um hardly anything on income inequality and political polarization. So the next year um was also the 2016 elections.

Um And I decided that my goal was that they would be able to um participate in the national conversation that was occurring around uh that campaign and that from an important position this time, not just this is the right thing to say for based on my ideology. Um So I basically taught all of the historical concept um for them to be able to understand the, the policy issues so that they could participate in the conversation and discussion. So I moved the 19 fifties to the present or 19 thirties to the present unit to the beginning of the year because of course, that's when they needed to know it in the fall. Um And I revamped my, that, that unit uh uh or units, I just took out the, the foreign uh relations part. And we taught, I mean, uh uh I taught that at the end of the year. Um and we uh I, I just sort of reorganized things and added things. So we're looking at the, the, through the historical, through lines to that explain um racial inequality, racial tension, racism, structural racism today.

Um A second one was in income inequality, which is, you know, also a huge um a factor behind uh many of the policy issues and finally, the political polarization, that was the, the shortest part. Um So I just, you know, taught a lot of the same history but uh you know, and, and concentrating on, on those uh factors. And then at the end of the six week unit, I had um I, I invited parents of family members, uh uh adults uh to a uh a discussion. They, I broke the kids up into groups of mixed groups of, of adults and, and students uh in several different classrooms. Um And I had uh several uh you know, questions but the, the, the, the questions, but again, they were, they weren't like right or wrong questions. They were like um just wondering, right, exploring, analyzing and the parents were, were floored at how well even when they got, were presented with novel issues, they were able to, to connect and, and apply what they had learned.

Well, that was because I intentionally did that because I kept telling them throughout the the unit, I was like, remember the point is that that not just not that you learn these memorize these historical events, but remember the point is is that, you know, 15, 20 years, you hear about something new, a new issue or a new policy that you're able to identify the patterns. Um you know, look below it and see what the tensions are, but between it and be able to make an informed and the historical context and be able to make an informed decision on where you stand on it. Um So I emphasized that I emphasized the pattern, like one of the things I did was um that before we started, uh each unit, then, um I would present uh what I call value tensions. I made them up. But um for example, individual rights versus the common, good, uh civil liberties versus national security and they were on a continuum, they're not right or wrong, but on a continuum, we did a lot of um take a stand activities for example.

And I would, in the beginning of the unit, I would give them start out with very easy, easy, very, you know, something very obvious issues in, in, in their world around them, not national politics where you have that tension. Um And then I would have them stand on a continuum and, you know, for several different ones until they, they they got, they were able to identify, see how all in all these issues we have there the same or similar tension underneath it. Then we would, uh do the history of the unit, the, the historical and again, each time, every time a new, um, uh historical event is I help them see the, the patterns. And then at the end of the unit, we would go back to the present. But this time with a more meaty controversial, you know, issues that are actually in the news. Um And then the same thing based on what you've learned in history and based on your understanding of those tensions, what can you tell me about, you know, what insight does that give you into this issue?

So they had tons of practice each repetitive. Um And so at the end, they, they were able to, to do that. Um So, but that's my emphasis is on teaching historical and structural racism as opposed to interpersonal bias. I almost don't touch um interpersonal bias. I think that's first of all, that can be very ideologically uh laden. Um You, especially without, if you don't have that historical context, then if you're, it becomes very emotional and contentious and very ideological. But also I feel like I would be imposing um a AAA position on them like this is the right thing, you know, this is the correct answer. So this is the right position. This is, this is how you be race that are not racist. You know, and I, II, I do that with myself and my son but, um, it, it's, I think it's inappropriate in, in the classroom but I find that, you know, as long as you, you, you, you know that history and you have the evidence and you're basing your opinion on that evidence.

Um, then I, I found that the positions were, uh, you know, they could be very different uh ideologically liberal and conservative, but you don't have anybody saying something, you know, crazy or, or, or racist, right? You know. Um So one of the ways I did that was a key way that I did that is um in the beginning of the uh of the unit, um I had them, I asked them the question, you know, does structural racism exist? Like just the, the, the start of the section on, on race? Um And I said this is, and I, because I don't, I'm not gonna tell them that structural racism exists. That's um you know, first of all, as a, as a black woman, I'm definitely not gonna say that to um a predominantly white classroom but any, but anyhow, it, it's just not good teaching, right? You know, that that's basic teaching is you don't need the students need to find out for themselves. Um So uh they looked at the data so they, they did what I call a data inquiry instead, you know, instead of using historical um inquiries are based on text, right?

Primary sources, text, sometimes images. This one was based on data, it's all data. Um And, but I did say this is an empirical um inquiry uh like you have in science uh or, but um not in, not in opinion and, and not just in science and in social science, right? So in economics, sociology, you know, the human geography, it's an empirical issue that you're trying to figure out. So look at the data and then uh at the end I say, OK, what you're trying to figure out is the structure exist. What, what did you find? And they're like, oh my God, it not only does it exist, but it is so much worse than we imagined. They, they, I knew structural racism existed because they told me, they taught me that is not good teaching, right? Um But the there and also not, not only should you not be telling, you know, that the students should be looking at the data themselves, but also it was interesting that, you know, once they saw the data, they saw it was so much worse than they imagined because their imagination is, you know, if you just say structural reasons this without that, you know, them seeing the data themselves, they, they imagine it to be much smaller than, than it is.

And, and then, and then they could see also very specifically how some of the ways it plays out, right? So then, um I presented them with a, a framework for the entire unit. Um I said we're going to distinguish between empirical issues and opinion slash policy issues. So, empirical issues are not up to debate. Um You know, we don't debate uh whether the holocaust occurred, we don't debate whether it's um um you know, of what, what temperature water boils or, or freezes or whatever it is. Right. So, um and does stricter racism exist, as we saw, it's an empirical issue, it's very, it's pretty straightforward to measure it, you know, in different ways, it's broken down, you know, how does stricter racism a affect, for instance, racial disparities and asthma, racial, you know, um and, but there's tons, tons and tons of evidence, right on that. Um So we, we don't, it's not appropriate to debate it. We assess the, the, the evidence on it and you should definitely be given the opportunity to assess the evidence on empirical issues before you just make a decision or, you know, based on so what you think.

Um And, but then we're gonna separate that from policy questions because that's opinion and, and that's, that's gonna vary a lot. Uh not just individually, uh not just your identity but also your ideology obviously, right? You know, uh more government intervention, less government intervention that is, we are not uh uh uh suggesting that one is better than the other if you're against affirmative action. I totally respect that. I can, I, you know, that's, that's an ideological opinion but, you know, that's, it, it's not the structure of race that's not up for, for debate. And what that did was, um, it, it greatly minimized, it pretty much cut out most the vast majority of ways that classrooms are disrupted by conversations on race. Um, and the vast majority of, uh, parent concerns because, um, most of the racism is going to enter the classroom when uh a student uh says, um you know, strict racism doesn't exist, you know, not, not based on evidence just because they, they haven't personally observed it in their um 90 a 95% white community.

They have not, never personally observed it. So strict racism doesn't exist but they can see racial disparities. So, oh, but the racial disparities are due to black people just not working hard enough or are due to uh being low income, right? And then that is not gonna go over very well with the black students or Latino students or even, you know, people, other progressives, right? So that's gonna be one source and then the other source of, of the classroom disruption of uh these conversations going wrong. Um Is what if a conservative student says, for example, um you know, I'm against for uh I don't agree with affirmative action which is a completely valid concern, but then, you know, uh they get called racist or you know, they, they get that push back. So if you have that distinction between purple versus policy and uh you look at the evidence and strict racism exists, it, it does impact, it does not determine racial disparities. Clearly, individual effort in there obviously also play a role in not too, but it, it certainly impacts that you have to consider the impact of that on racial disparities.

But then once that's established, um people can have different opinions on what to do about it. That is very different. Um And I would present that very, just transparently to the students. And it would be interesting because, uh you know, first there was an outburst and it was usually on progressive students, progressive students would um shout out what you didn't allow people to say that affirmative action is better. I'm like, yep. You know, that is an opinion, right? And then, oh, it always went the exact same way and then they would, then they'd be silent for like a minute and you could almost see the cogs being, you know, turning in their minds and they're like, wait a second, wait, that, that works. That works. Yeah. Yeah. With that, you know, um and it, it, it allowed for, it really reduced the tension and then allowed for much more respectful conversations, respect for each other.

That also remember combined with those value tensions, right? Because uh you know, I had, I had ordered that was at the same time simultaneously, you know, teaching them that, you know, the, the, those other people aren't stupid. It's not that I'm right. They're, they're wrong. I got it right. They're stupid. But rather that they're valuing a different, you know, that they're, they're on the other, you know, that they're having a different value in that value. Tension. Um, and all of all of us agree that both of those values are important. Both everybody agrees that individual rights and the common good are uh are, are good things and, and, and based on the context, there are also foundational uh you know, part of our constitution, they're foundational um values, same thing, civil liberties, national security, but we disagree on and we are on that continuum, you know, what balance we're on. So that combined with the empirical versus um policy framework plus some other work I did with um uh for example, I do deliberations into the debates also, you know, it's not, I'm right or wrong, but we have to listen to each other, respect each other and come to a um you know, uh a final solution that is that, that benefits the common good.

But again, only policy issues, no, only policy issue, right? Not empirical issues, right? Um And so, and, and I also emphasized, um you know, the, that the co the goal was also the reason why I wanted them to be able to understand and take informed positions on policy was so that they could work together across different racial difference, ideological difference, whatever um worked together. Um and, and uh deliberate together to find um you know, solutions that, that, that benefit the common good that all of us are, are um you know, the benefit of the country because that was also a concern of mine that we're so politically polarized. Um Anyway, I talked a lot. No, this is beautiful. I feel like this was like the majority of like everything we needed to hear. So I'm so glad you went through all of that. I just wanted to highlight a few things that stuck out to me of just like this idea of how it looks in practice because you took us kind of from the, the, you took us through the framework and the vision, but you took us through it through the lens of an actual unit or how you would lay this out for students.

And so some things I'm just thinking if a listener is thinking, OK, how do I coach a history teacher to kind of do some of these things? I love the idea of kind of that. And I talked about it on the podcast here before. And you were the one who introduced me to this theory or this, this concept of kind of the empirical or the policy, right? I think mcavoy and has right to like talk about these things. And so that is fascinating, right? So we can not, we don't debate the empirical, we do debate the policy, we can have a continuum. I love that idea. It's either or you can be on a continuum on policy issues. Right. Yes. Great point. And then also that it benefits the common good. I think that grounding is like really central to the conversation and that's how you get through those two challenges that you raise. Right? If a, if a teacher is just kind of going in and saying, we're gonna have these debates about policy issues, but the the grounding isn't in that it, your answer has to benefit the common good. Then you probably could get a lot of like racism and, and things coming out. But that grounding just makes it so that we eliminate. Like you were saying a lot of those concerns we may have and honestly concerns that teachers often, those concerns are so daunting for teachers that they don't even start the conversations because they're afraid of what might happen and they feel ill equipped.

And I think these are logistical things that you can do in a classroom to have a generative conversation that respects the dignity and honors the dignity of everyone and still enables for disagreement and like an authentic deliberation. So I just wanna say thank you because that is amazing. Yeah, I might even, I came to us history after teaching um civics and, and government for um uh for several years. So I had that background. So, civic discourse um and uh was, was important to me that um that makes sense to me. And I already had um a lot of civic activities, like for instance, the deliberation, you know, the, the take a stand. I had already, I had already done the value tensions. II, I transferred them over. I invented that I came up with that when I was teaching us government and civic. So um I, I sort of adapted it to, to, to the history, the history setting. I love the value tension. So honestly, I, I just was working with the US history team who was developing some new units.

And my favorite one that they developed was or they didn't frame it in that exact way like a value tension. But it basically was like, is it more important to have this value or this value? And that was like the key question and I just envision a world where like us history units are taught where like each unit is a value tension and then we just go back in history to explore like the both sides of those tensions. And then we use it to like you were saying, bring it to the modern deliberation, like what's going on now because I love your goal of like, how do we get students today to understand what's going on today? Using kind of history and that grounding to um really be able to participate in the national discourse. Like I, I love that, I'd love to see that everywhere. Thank you. The value, tensions have several um goals or uh benefits. And one is like you said that the respect on um uh you know, of other positions, ideological positions, but also it, it also encourages them to, to move a little bit towards the, the well off the extremes.

I don't care where they are, you know, they don't, I don't, it's not like I want them all to be exactly in the middle, but the, the extremes are usually not very healthy, right? Um So it, it, and stop thinking it as a binary, but it usually alludes them to have a position that's at least slightly, you know, off of the, the extremes on the continuum because that's what a debate does. A debate encourages you almost forces you to be, you know, 100% this or 100% this, um, the whole package, right? Um, but that allows them to think more critically. It's also encourages more critical thinking, right? Because you're, you're able to weigh it and, and you can say, well, you know, this, but that maybe actually this part can be further on and this part, yeah, it uh it, you break down the components and really weigh the advantages and disadvantages. Um which makes you, which helps you, like I said, it helps your critical thinking skills and also it really helps you have a, a more reform position rather than just, you know, uh the talking points.

And then the other um advantage of the, the value is that's what allowed me, allowed them to draw the historical through lines or not all by itself, but it really helped them to draw the historical through lines. And also again, to, to be able to understand the, the present day issues because they had two, they had two resources or um one was that historical context, right? Um For example, terms that are used in, in politics, right? They're historically la they have the, the they say historical connotation, they have, you know, lots of the terms we use law and order and on and on and on, right? They have deep historical connotations that kids don't know. Right. So they have that historical context and historical connotation. Um And then they have that value test and those two things will allow them to make an informed decision. And I also yet another thing is um to all everything else that I've said so far was explicit, very explicit and very uh that I taught the kids.

One thing I did not um explicitly share with the kids is that I indirectly um uh I modeled well, first of all, I modeled uh uh that, you know, we're, we're, we're learning, right? We're growing, we're constantly making mistakes and if that's OK, you know. Um so I, I would tell them, for example, I'm wearing my teacher hat, right? So, I mean, you can't say something completely, uh uh obnoxious and, but it, but if you, this is your chance to ask all those questions that you are scared to ask because this is a learning space, a learning space. And then once you, uh, so that you don't make those mistakes or you feel more confident when you go out and have these conversations elsewhere. But also I modeled uh in the very beginning when we started that. Um I, I almost, I very don't talk about bias very much. Uh I, I feel that it's more important as a US history teacher to teach that historical context and about structural racism um into teaching about bias and interpersonal racism.

First of all, it's hard to do without being uh teaching uh progressive values, right? Uh which is not inappropriate class when we should be non ideological. And it, it's very much telling kids, you know, how you should the Yeah, what you should do. If you don't believe this, then you are a racist, then this is the right position. It, it, I don't know, it's, it's hard to, yeah. And, and also that the US history, right? That's the historical context is that, that history and that the con contemporary structure, racism, that, that's my job, right? Um And also uh they can learn, it's pretty easy to learn about bias outside the classroom and they, they have 100 chances to learn about in uh inter race outside that classroom. But they will have very few chances to learn that history and about structuralism outside the classroom. And finally, that historical structure of racism will set them up to learning about bias. Because from what I've seen a lot of ways that these conversations and discussions on bias go wrong is like how my my students, you know, when they discussed affirmative action, right?

Uh because they're, they're not aware that that not those, those um positions on bias or interpersonal racism are not informed bias. So I see my role as, you know, setting them up. Um But anyhow, the, so that, but so I would model that uh that the, the 11 of the few times I talked about bias is at the very beginning to, you know, set the tone in the classroom. So the, the one thing, you know, this is, you can't say it in something obnoxious, but you can ask questions that you would be afraid to ask somewhere else. And then the, the, the, the, the second thing is I would um model look, I'm, I'm a, you know, 50 year old African American woman and, and I, and I, you know, step in it all the time mess up, right? Um You know, with other, I say things that are, you know, offensive to other people. And I gave an, an example, actually, I gave an uh an actual example uh that involved a, another staff member. But when we, I didn't name them, I forget. But, um, and I say, I, I'm continue learning, I'm, you know, I, I said, like, hold up, I apologize.

You know, I inform myself so I, I won't do that at least particular thing again. II, I said that's part of, it's just a natural part of living in a diverse uh country and it has tons of benefits. I love living in such a, a, a diverse, uh community. But, um, my responsibility as a resident, a citizen is that I need to educate myself on it and I'm gonna make mistakes along the way, you know, I mean, it's not like you say check. I, I don't have any more biases. I was like, it's, it's like I don't say check. I am a, I learned how to be a good mother, right? So, or, um, you know, you don't take check. I learned how to be good Christian Jew or Muslim. Right? It, it's a, it's a con or check. I am the perfect, uh, partner, spouse, right? It's a constant process and you're going to mess up, you are going to inadvertently offend your, your spouse or your child.

Right. What do you do? You just apologize, inform yourself, keep on going. And so I think that helped a lot. And then the final thing is that I helped, I was, again, I didn't say it but, um, I, I made comments along the way that helped them see themselves as a we, we, I I fostered a we identity, equity con I call it equity conscious. We identity. I told them, you know, like the, the six firemen who touched the elephant in different parts, we're, we're living on different parts of the elephant. We're not just touching different parts of elephant. We live on different parts of elephant. So our Americas look very different. We each see of an experience, a very different America. Um So we gotta talk but so just like this explain, we got to talk to each other so that we can move the elephant forward together because we're, you know, even though we're in different parts of the elephant, we're also on the same elephant and it benefits us all to move it forward.

So you gotta figure out how to, you know, how to look at empirical evidence and how to talk about policy issues and and listen to each other so that you can figure out solutions that benefit the common good, which is the whole elephant to move it forward. So we were constantly, I would, I would say uh you know, you guys have to learn these skills, you have to learn the skills of looking for evidence. I also taught them how to read data graphs. Of course, they've learned that in math class, but it's different for, you know, social science issues. We looked at, you know, learning how to data learning. Uh you learn how to use, go to evidence and then, you know, you learn how to deliberate, learn how civic discord. You learn how you're learning all these things so that when you go out in the world, you know, you can, you can help. Uh I told them us adults messed up, right? We've created this world with, you know, racism and uh um structural poverty, structural uh racism, extreme political polarization.

We can't even pass any laws because Congress is so divided. We adults messed that up. But you, we I I'm I'm counting on you, you guys have the opportunity to use these skills to move the alpha forward to, to pass, to vote on policies that will improve the country and, and bring us back together that will reduce racism for racism, reduce strut for poverty and, and and pass laws that improve the common good. Um So you noticed what I was doing? There is, first of all, I'm fostering that we identity, you know, we identity with many differences but um and you can work together, right? Um But the second thing also is I'm taking away the shame and blame, right? You are not, no, none of you as young people are responsible for what was in the past, but you are collectively responsible for improving the future.

You see that, that difference. Um And then I would say, you know, 30 years from now when I'm in that old age, old people home. Don't let me find out that you guys dropped the ball. I, we are counting on you to work together and move things forward and, and fix a little bit of what we messed up. So I didn't, I didn't tell them what was behind that. That was the only, I didn't tell them what was behind that, but I was fostering that, that um those feelings or a disposition. I should say that is amazing. Thank you for sharing all of that. I think as we move too close, I think people have been listening have probably been like, yes, I wanna do all of these things and I, I'm wondering if there's one thing we can share as a place to start for either a teacher or someone who is kind of coaching teachers, history teachers to kind of do this better. Where what's kind of step one? What's kind of the thing that gets the momentum going if you had to pick one? Hi, it's Lindsay. Just hopping in here quickly to tell you about today this episode. Freebie Io talks about in this episode, her lesson plan where she uses the metaphor of the blind men and the elephant to teach about important structural racism concepts.

That lesson is going to be available to you for free. Thank you. I, and that will be located on our blog post for this episode. That's at Lindsay beli dot com slash blog slash 132 back to the episode. Um That's kind of hard because they definitely worked in. Um I would not do one of those alone. Um That, so I guess you could divide it into, let's see, two parts, right? Two in basic. It's that, you know, same thing, the empirical. So for the, you know, teaching that history teaching that structural racism. So, unfortunately, I had to, um I had to invent that. Um basically, uh I had to teach myself a lot of it too. And then I had to create resources and figure out how to teach it to get because teaching about ST and structural racism, you know, is hard. Um I do have a um uh a short article in psychology today that summarizes um that because I train now, II, I now train teachers uh how to do this, but it's I, I would tell them you cannot do them separate.

So you have to, on one hand, you know, teach that historical structure of racism with tons of data, not just primary sources, but data, et cetera. Um on one hand and, and I, I came up from bad experiences, but what I did is after every time I would try something new or after the unit, I was constantly sending out um Google Monkey Forms anonymous, but they had to specify their race and their ideology and I would pour through those. Um And then say, oh, I need to adjust it, you know, and I adjust it next, the, you know, the next, for the next year or sometimes if I, if I could see it did not go well in the classroom, I come back the next day and say, I'm, I'm sorry, I apologize that that did not go well, I'm gonna restart that. So I, um but anyhow, um yeah, so that, that, that's one set of skills and resources that teach about structural racism and they don't really exist. Um And then the other part um is the more civic part.

So that includes the value, tensions. Um And that uh I, I, the, basically the, the per I call it, it's perspectives, consciousness or being able to take perspectives, taking, they call it. And I use the blind men and the elephant framework. We, I would simulate it um with the students, students would simulate the blind men and the elephant. Um I have that lesson is free on my website, by the way. Um So the, on the very, very first day school, they would, I have them, I would blindfold, you know, three volunteers. And I brought out this old sculpture of a beer that I found in the store, art room storage. Um And then I put a different part into each of their hands. They would, I say, describe the shape, not the text of the field, but the shape, of course they disagreed. Um And then, um I would share the, the parable metaphor to them and they got, they got it right. Everyone has different perspectives on the issue. And I said, OK, I'm gonna take it one step forward and I gave them, um, maps of the racial maps of Washington to see where I was.

And you could see the stark segregation of both. I gave them three maps, racial, um, political ideology or who voted for in the last election and also income. And I said, OK, what does that, how does that connect? And they were working in pairs? And usually you take them a while, but eventually each year one of the kids would say, oh my God, we're not just touching different parts of the elephant. We're actually living on different parts of the elephant and we're experiencing different Americas and, and I said, yes, so the experiencing different Americas, that's the empirical issues, right? Um in, in, in large part, right? Because um because you, you, you, you have students say who look at a graph of national graph and say no, that's not true. You just because it, yeah, you, you see that map right there, you see that, you see that neighbor right there, that's 99% white, you know, and high income. Yeah, you live in that bubble. You don't see the rest of the world. This is national averages, right?

You know. Um so that living on different parts of the elephant is more like that empirical and then the touching is, is more like a policy, you know, the different opinions based on your identity and stuff. And I, I put that, I blew up that poster and have it on the wall all year long and we would refer to it and, and the kids would refer to it. Like if they're having a discussion, not, not even about race about the year and they're having a discussion about whatever. And when the kids gets entrenched in their, in their position, the other kid would point to the wall and say, remember the elephant, you know, um it got to where the English teachers came to me and were like, so what is this elephant that the kids are talking about in English in my class? So, you know, but um so yeah, those two parts, the two, they have to be uh you, you have to do them in Tanda. Um That makes so much sense.

Yeah, because you, because if you just like present the structural racism without first of all giving them that freedom to have different opinions on political issues, you could see how that doesn't go well. Um And also without training them to work together, you know, to respect each other's differences on different parts of the, all that, you know, is they work together and, and then also vice versa. I would not do all any of the civics part unless they had the historical and economic um evidence too. So they worked together. But I do have um so that's what I do now, iii I train teachers um how to do that. And I also um I developed uh I have like huge um huge data uh base of uh not data. I have these huge power point um of just slides of different data points, different historical resources, primary sources. Um And that's part of the package.

If I, if I train um teachers, they get um they, they get that just treasure trove of tons and tons of, of uh yes slides with uh data graphs with the uh the results of of different research, um you know, primary sources, et cetera. Um And then, uh you know, they can pick and choose, of course, you know, based on their curriculum, based on their interests, based on uh whatever they, it, it, it makes it easier for them to, to feed it into their given into their own curriculum, you know, they can take to enhance. Um So, yeah, and I, I was gonna say you're leaning me into my, my final question of just like where people can learn more about you. And of course, we'll link to all these things of psychology today article. Um That, that lesson you were saying will link to your site and the lesson on perspective consciousness. Um where can people who are a lot of people who listen to our leaders and if they're interested in bringing you to their school for training, like how do they get in touch with you and, and where would you want them to go to?

Connect? Yep. Um My uh consult consultancy is named Uprooting Inequity. So the that's intentional, it's uh the Uprooting is uh it is reflective of my um my focus on getting to root causes, right? So when they're looking at policy issues, when you're looking and also on the institutional level, right? So if you have, if you're trying to address, for example, inequity on the institutional level, as school administrators, you know, let's get down to, let's drill down to the root causes and some of them may be historical, some of them may be behavioral science. I'm, I'm a huge nerd. I, I eat, I eat a peer reviewed journal articles for breakfast. Um So I'm always, so, you know, the historical roots, economic roots of behavioral science, um and as in addition to uh evidence based strategies, so I'm always like, let's get to it. So that's essentially the, the same thing with the, the policy issues, right? I'm telling the kids, you know, don't vote on it or take a position because this is the right way.

But, you know, let's get to the root behind the policy issue which is, you know, historical and structural racism or whatever the equivalent is. So that's, that's why I'm Uprooting inequity um instead of addressing uh on the top and I have a website Uprooting inequity dot com. Perfect. I thank you so much for being a guest on this show today. It's been a pleasure learning from you. Thank you for having me. If you like this episode, I bet you'll be just as jazz as I am about my coaching program for increasing student led discussions in your school, Shane, SA and Jamila Dugan. Talk about a pedagogy of student voice in their book street data. They say students should be talking for 75% of class time. Do students in your school talk for 75% of each class period. I would love to walk into any classroom in your community and see this in action. If you're smiling yourself as you listen right now. Grab 20 minutes on my calendar to brainstorm. How I can help you make this big dream of reality? I'll help you build a comprehensive plan from full day trainings and discussion protocols like circle and Z Socratic seminar to follow up classroom visits where I can plan witness and debrief discussion based lessons with your teachers. Sign up for a nerdy no strings attached to brainstorm.

Call it Lindsay by clients dot com slash contact. Until next time. Leaders think big act brave and be your best self. This podcast is a proud member of the Teach Better Podcast network. Better today, better tomorrow and the podcast to get you there, explore more podcasts at teach better dot com. Slash podcasts and we'll see you at the next episode.

132. A Framework for Teaching Structural Racism in US History with Ayo Magwood M.Sc.
132. A Framework for Teaching Structural Racism in US History with Ayo Magwood M.Sc.
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