Cultivating Respectful Classroom Discourse in Trump's America

Jennifer Pendergrass

Abstract


The 2016 Presidential Election brought debate about wall building, deportation for undocumented families, and registering for Muslim Americans. A Trump presidency means that many of our ESOL families are concerned about their security in our communities. Families are talking about this at home, and children are talking at school. Students are repeating insensitive things they have heard at home or on television. For our students who are already fearful that their families will be separated or that they will have to register because of their religion, hearing their peers support those ideas can feel intimidating. How can teachers provide a safe learning environment that respects all learners? Suggestions are presented for maintaining an intimidation-free classroom and encouraging respectful discourse in order to promote optimal learning opportunities.


Keywords


Politics; Trump; Bullying; Intimidation; Muslim Registry; Deportation; Safe Environment

Full Text:

Download PDF

References


Alber, R. (2011). 20 Tips for Creating a Safe Learning Environment. Retrieved November 15, 2016, from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/20-tips-create-safe-learning-environment-rebecca-alber

Buntting, C. (2012). Issues in storytelling. New Zealand Science Teacher, (130), 6-10.

Cleveland, M. (2009). Using Current Events to Promote Class Discussion of Controversial Topics. Hot Topics: Best Practices In Teaching Controversial Issues in Psychology, October 16-17, 2009, Atlanta, GA doi:10.1037/e522282013-013

Dusenbury, L. (n.d.). Creating a Safe Classroom Environment. Retrieved November 15, 2016, from http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/creating-safe-classroom-environment-climate.shtml

Lanktree, G. (November 11, 2016). Schoolchildren begin building Trump's 'wall' as racial bullying surges in the classroom. International Business Times. Retrieved from http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/school-children-have-begun-building-trumps-wall-racial-bullying-surges-classroom-1591042

Marshall, J. C. (2016). The highly effective teacher: 7 classroom-tested practices that foster student success. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.

Perry, B. D. (n.d.). Creating an Emotionally Safe Classroom. Retrieved November 15, 2016, from http://teacher.scholastic.com/professional/bruceperry/safety_wonder.htm

Post-Trump victory bullying, harassment reported in schools. (2016, November 13). Retrieved November 15, 2016, from http://www.cbsnews.com/news/post-trump-victory-bullying-harassment-reported-schools/

Robinson, C. F., & Kakela, P. J. (2006). Creating a Space to Learn: A Classroom of Fun, Interaction, and Trust. College Teaching, 54(1), 202-207. doi:10.3200/ctch.54.1.202-207


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


GATESOL In Action is a publication of the Georgia Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, an Affiliate of TESOL International Association