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Search for Peace:
"Classroom Strategies for Dispelling Cultural Stereotypes:
Focus on Islamic, Arab-American and Jewish-American Issues in the Classroom."
K-12 Workshop June 28-29
The premise for the workshop is that stereotypes based on misinformation about the many cultures, races, religions and ethnic backgrounds represented in our classrooms regularly cause harm to students, and disrupt learning - both for the students who are targeted and for the school community as a whole. This workshop grows out of specific concerns about acts of intolerance directed against Arab-American, Muslim and Jewish students, but is structured to provide strategies applicable to all forms of stereotyping and the inter-group tensions and conflicts which they feed. The central strategy is to uses accurate information about the richness and complexity of the cultural and religious backgrounds from which our students come as the tool to dispel the stereotypes that help to perpetuate and rationalize intolerance.
Our objectives for the workshop are to create a toolbox of resources on diversity, tolerance and Arab, Muslim and Jewish cultures for culturally relevant teaching; offer strategies for educators to infuse multicultural education in order to help prevent insensitivity, verbal abuse and violence in the schools ; provide a refresher for teachers on cultural, ethnic and religious sensitivity; challenge teachers' assumptions; hear students' and parents' experiences regarding bias and intolerance; include collaboration time for participants; create a workshop format with multiple entry points in recognition of the various skill and sensitivity levels of participants.