I’m black! I’m white! I’m sweet! I’m unique!
Discovering commonalities while appreciating differences was a central theme of Black History Month celebrated this past February at the Hellenic American Union.
Discovering commonalities while appreciating differences was a central theme of Black History Month celebrated this past February at the Hellenic American Union. Young learners of English, aged 8-11, were invited to ‘’taste the experience’’.
Seated with their teacher around a table, the children feasted on toffees and caramels, black and white chocolate, white and brown sugar, and an assortment of cookies. All the different flavors were each sweet in a different way, yet that’s what made the party all the more enjoyable. In this practical and delightful way, the children were able to make the connection between the concrete, tangible things we see in life and the abstract, universal values we cherish as human beings: Yes, there is diversity; we are all different, really. Sometimes, the differences are obvious, like the color of one’s skin, or the difference of ethnic origin.
In an era of increasing inter-cultural global exchange, it is important that children realize early on that we are going to meet people in our lives that may not look like ourselves, but that at bottom these people are just like us-with needs like our own and gifts to share with us.
The lesson was designed with a message in mind to encourage young students to feel proud of their differences rather than feel the need to be exactly like other people. Ultimately, we share more similarities than differences.