Blog podcasts

Podcasts for Teaching About Racial Justice Issues

by Marsha Rakestraw Where did the concept of whiteness come from (and when)? How does our current US culture affect Indigenous standards of beauty? Was that thing that white politician/celebrity/person in the news just said/did racist? As the impacts of white supremacy and racial injustice gain more exposure in the mainstream, podcasts provide an important…

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Resources for Teaching How Black Lives Matter at School

by Marsha Rakestraw News headlines remind us daily that racial injustice and violence and discrimination against Black people (and other people of color) continue to thrive, and the impact on people of color, especially children and families, is significant and long-lasting. With school systems in the US made up largely of white teachers, many schools…

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Person throwing a box of food into a compost dumpster

17 Resources for Teaching About Food Waste

by Marsha Rakestraw “Every day, we’re teaching kids that food is trash.” ~ Jonathan Bloom Our school food systems in the US are not set up to minimize waste or encourage healthy habits. Students are often rushed at lunchtime, may have unappetizing food options, may be given (or take) much more food than they’ll eat,…

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9 Strategies for Cultivating Empathy and Compassion in Your Classroom

by Marsha Rakestraw To create a just, compassionate, sustainable world for all – and to help our students become solutionaries — it’s vital that we help them (and ourselves) build empathy and compassion for people, animals, and the earth. We humans are wired to care about those with whom we have close relationships (our family,…

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16 Children's Books about refugees

16 Children’s Picture Books About Refugees

by Marsha Rakestraw As war, climate change, persecution, and hunger challenges escalate, the number of refugees worldwide, and the challenges facing them and their host countries, continue to grow. And while we adults struggle with what to do and how (or whether) to help, many children may also be seeking understanding and wanting some answers….

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10 Tools to Help You Find More Ethical Products

by Marsha Rakestraw From the time we arise in the morning until we fall asleep, we participate in a continuous cycle of using stuff that affects ourselves, other people, animals, and the planet. And during holidays our consumption of stuff tends to jump. We do what we can to buy products that do more good…

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12 Children’s Picture Books About Families With Gay Parents

by Marsha Rakestraw In November 2017 California announced that it is adopting “LGBT-inclusive” history textbooks for grades K-8. It is the first state in the US to do so. Some schools may try to ban or discourage talk about homosexuality or about families with gay parents, but the fact is that there are a growing…

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How Do Your Electronic Gadgets Rate on Their Environmental Impact?

by Marsha Rakestraw A friend of mine is a technology early adopter. He wants the latest version of his favorite gadgets, and sometimes he’ll buy two. He tries to resell or give away the older (or extra) models, but that’s still a lot of electronics to dispose of. And while more people are deciding to…

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Getting the Child Slave Labor Out of Your Shopping Cart

by Marsha Rakestraw We hear about forced and child labor, reading about specific instances in the news, and we may wonder whether the sugar, cookies, or bananas we bought last week, or the cellphone we’re using, or the fireworks we enjoy are made with the hands of children or slaves; it can be hard to…

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Resources for Teaching and Learning About Intersectionality

by Marsha Rakestraw All of us have a variety of characteristics that contribute to who we are: our gender and ethnicity. Our income level and beliefs about religion/spirituality. Our sexual orientation and level of able-bodiedness. Our geographic location and age. And so much more. Each of these characteristics can influence both our level of privilege…

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