May 12th, 2016

By: Cece Younger Have you ever wondered why so many children’s stories are…well, white? I highly doubt there is a room full of old white men sitting in some secret chamber conspiring to control the imaginations of children. However, there is clearly an inclination towards the characters being of European descent. Let’s take a look at how this may have come about. Many of the famous stories we hear are from Europe. Centuries ago there was very little diversity in European countries….

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February 18th, 2016

How to Nurture Creative Minds

By: Cece Younger Pablo Picasso once said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” Kids are inherently motivated to be inventive and creative. When you talk to a little kid you can see their imaginative minds at work in what they play and say. They have imaginary friends that take them on adventures. They actively dream and talk about their dreams. They see and take in everything they encounter. They use this information to develop their…

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January 20th, 2016

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As I prepare to go to the Caribbean, with my 5 year old, for the next few months to work I go to my local bookstore to stock up on books. I looked for books my beginning reader can read by herself and ones we can read together. What I found were books with white faced main characters, I refer to white faces because many of the books have no reference to heritage they only have, and books with animal characters. I went to a sales associate to ask if I missed a book and the associate led me to…

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January 13th, 2016

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The storytelling cards were tested on a group of residential boys between the ages of 8 and 12. Each received a pack of cards and asked to write story. They were given 20 minutes. Given the diversity of literacy levels some stories were more complex than others. But all were writing. After the session the boys gave me new ideas of how they can be used in a group. The social workers, who were in the room, commented they had not seen some of the boys so engaged in writing. They also commented…

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January 6th, 2016

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About two years ago my then 3 year-old daughter wanted to get all the Disney princess – Cinderella, Aurora, Ariel, Bell, Rapunzel and Tiana– wall decals for her room. I was trying to avoid or postpone this request as long as possible. But I purchased them and we put them on her bedroom walls. After a week my daughter and I were talking and she asked me, “Why do all the princesses look like you?” The question cut me like a knife. So, we sat on the side of her bed and I explained to her…

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