The Single Stories Schools Present

I grew up in a city where the majority of the citizens were white.  All of the teachers I had were white.  The majority of people I interacted with in my hometown were white.  This weeks article looks at “single stories” and whose stories were presented.  Obviously, the “single stories” that were presented to me came from a white perspective.  I learned that the truths that mattered where ideologies of the white settler nation.  We hardly learned about the First Nations people  or the history of Canada before white people came and took the land.  Furthermore, we hardly learned about Canadian history before colonization, and we only briefly learned about the impact of residential schools.  The single stories I learned about Canadian history came from white authors, and perpetuated the idea that white people “saved” Canada by bringing a modern civilization, ignoring the help that the First Nation’s people contributed.

Due to the white-washed stories that were presented to me from a young age, I developed a misconstrued view of how I read the world.  “We all read using lenses that have been coloured by our unique identities and life experiences.” (Chapter 7 reading)  I was constantly told that all people are equal, which made it difficult for me to learn about the inequities in the world, especially the ones that exist in Canada.  Since I was taught that all people are equal, I thought that it was a person’s own fault if they did not have enough; I did not understand the societal barriers that cause inequity.  This deep rooted belief that “all people are equal” may cause biases because not all students have equal opportunities.  I will need to change my lenses of equality so that I am able to acknowledge that not everyone had equal opportunities, and those inequities can come into the classroom and be the reason as to why a student of mine is struggling.  I think a way that I can work against these biases would be to admit that I have more privilege than others, and to understand that privilege is part of those inequities.  I will continually try to become aware of my own biases an ask questions to help me learn why I feel that why, and how can I change my point of view.

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