As social networking sites and mobile technology offer new ways for students to socialize, educators can turn this technology into powerful classroom tools to engage students and teach lessons that promote social justice and challenge stereotypes, according to the Spring 2011 issue of Teaching Tolerance magazine, released today.
Challenging stereotypes and labels is also the subject of a series of articles that will help educators teach their students about immigration. The topic is one of several timely issues explored for teachers seeking classroom lessons that provide students an opportunity to exercise empathy and critical thinking skills.
Teaching Tolerance is being distributed free of charge by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) to more than 400,000 educators nationwide. It can be read at www.teachingtolerance.org.
"As educators, we strive to help our students recognize the humanity in everyone, but language, technology and our culture often reduce people to convenient stereotypes," said Teaching Tolerance Director Maureen Costello. "Social media and immigration are two opportunities for educators to bring lessons into the classroom that help students look beyond the labels."
A series of articles examines how educators across the country have used social networking sites, mobile technology and other social media to promote collaboration, learning, empathy and cultural understanding while bringing classroom lessons to life for students.
Immigration is explored in ways that will help teachers go beyond the myths and bumper sticker slogans that dominate the political debate over this hot-button issue. The magazine debunks 10 immigration myths and provides tools to help students think critically about this topic. It also introduces seven new Teaching Tolerance lessons - based in part on the recent SPLC report Injustice on Our Plates - that can be used to teach the role of immigrant labor in the U.S. food industry.
Other articles examine how to combat bullying and anti-Muslim bias; how to teach about modern-day slavery and human trafficking; and how to make science, technology, engineering and math classes more attractive to girls and students of color.
Teaching Tolerance magazine, published twice a year by the SPLC, is the nation's leading journal serving educators on diversity issues. In June, the magazine was named the 2009 Periodical of the Year by the Association of Educational Publishers, the fourth time it has won the honor. Teaching Tolerance films have garnered four Academy Award nominations and won two Oscars.