Monday, August 6, 2012

cultural faux pas

Oh, hello! Yes, I know, I went and did exactly what I said I WASN'T going to do and dropped off the face of the blogosphere for a bit. Truly, summer has been a whirlwind of activity and I've just not had time to be here at all, especially since Little Miss Grabby Hands won't let me actually type on those rare occasions I actually manage to turn the computer on. You're missing a lot, actually, if you haven't been following me on Facebook, but I'll post some summaries eventually so you don't have to miss out on all the fun times and cute pictures.

But seriously, what brings me back now is that I have apparently inadvertently ruffled some feathers in the Native American community. Seems there are some inaccuracies in the story I used for my Haudenosaunee unit (honest mistakes, this was a field-testing version of the story, the errors are being corrected as we speak in the final version), resulting in my posting some less-than-historically correct facts on this blog. Now, honestly, how anyone would take anything *I* have to say as historical fact is beyond me, and actually the story that I used is BY FAR the closest thing to authentic that is in existence, but despite that, I have been asked to make note of the places where things are less than perfect. Which I will happily do, it's just going to take a bit of time to go back through and add a little note at the top of applicable posts so that anyone reading this blog in the future and working with the new, updated materials will see the difference.

But first I wanted to take the opportunity to very sincerely apologize to anyone of any culture that feels that I have misrepresented their history and heritage. Those who know me know that this is entirely unintentional, I am the last person who wants to promote bigotry, bias and stereotypes (which is why I choose the stories and educational approach that I do!). Those that don't know me will I guess just have to take my word for it, and hopefully this apology is adequate to mending any fences I unwittingly tested. I would like to welcome anyone to comment at any time on any post on my blog about historical inaccuracies or wording that does not sit right with you -- I will let the comments stay as a permanent part of the blog, and will issue public apologies as appropriate.

I promise I will always do my best to accurately portray any culture/region that I cover with my kids, and assure you that anything less than acceptable is not for lack of trying to seek out the best portrayals I can. This sort of thing is much more likely to happen in the years ahead, as I strike out on my own without support of a curriculum that maintains the same values that I do. I hope you will all be patient with me and support me if I falter -- I will do everything within my power to make it right.

But as for the content my posts themselves, they are an accurate record of what I have done with the kids in term of materials and context. I won't go back and change them, even if they are later perceived as incorrect, as I cannot alter my own personal history. This blog is merely a journal of my own experience, anything within should be read with that light in mind.

So again, to summarize -- I only write what I do -- I apologize if any of it somehow insults someone -- I will try to do better, and will point out where I've fallen in the past -- and I appreciate your patience as you watch me take my journey.

I hope everyone is having a fabulous summer!

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

I'm sorry you've experienced any negativity. :( Knowing you, I know you are happy to receive corrected information where needed. Too bad it came in what sounds like a nasty package. Just remember, it says more about them than about you. Culturally insensitive is not an adjective I would use to describe you.

You don't have to post this comment if you don't want to. My intent is only support, not stirring a pot.

If you have a chance, I'd be interested in any corrected information you have received.