I believe that teaching children to love themselves (and others) is one of the greatest gifts that you can give! I also believe that children should learn to celebrate differences in the home and that their teachers and friends can, and should, be a wonderful source of influence and affirmation. My heart is that my web site and this blog can be tools that ALL people can use to help decrease the gap of hatred and misunderstanding and increase the bond of unity and understanding!
Below is a poem from the book The Crayon Box that Talked that I have read to hundreds of preschoolers. It's a great book with a simple message, "Together we are better"!
The Crayon Box That Talked
by Shane DeRolf
While walking in a toy store,
The day before today,
I overheard a crayon box,
With many things to say...
‘I don’t like Red!’ said Yellow.
And Green said, ‘Nor do I!
And no one here likes Orange,
But no one knows just why.’
‘We are a box of crayons
That doesn’t get along.’
Said Blue to all the others,
‘Something here is wrong!’
Well, I bought that box of crayons,
And took it home with me,
And laid out all the colors,
So the crayons could all see.
They watched me as I colored
With Red and Blue and Green,
And Black and White and Orange,
And every color in between...
They watched as Green became the grass,
And Blue became the sky,
The Yellow sun was shining bright,
On White clouds drifting by,
Colors changing as they touched,
Becoming something new.
They watched me as I colored.
They watched till I was through.
And when I’d finally finished,
I began to walk away.
And as I did, the crayon box
Had something more to say...
‘I do like Red!’ said Yellow.
And Green said, ‘So do I!
And, Blue, you were terrific,
So high up in the sky!’
‘We are a box of crayons,
Each one of us unique.
But when we get together,
The picture is complete.’
In my life as a:
"None Of The Above"
I've been told:
"You're Not Light Enough",
"You're Not Dark Enough",
"You're Not White Enough",
"You're Not Black Enough",
"You Have An Identity Crisis",
"You're Not One Of Us, You're One Of Them",
"You're Not One Of Them, You're One Of Us",
"You Don't Know Who You Are",
"You're Not White, You Must Be Black",
"You're Not Black, You Must Be White",
"You're Not Really White",
"You're Not Really Black",
"You're Both Black And White",
"You're Neither Black Or White"
"You're Nothing Really".
Accepted By Black And By White,
Rejected By White And By Black,
Integrated With Black And With White,
Alienated From White And From Black,
Praised And Complemented By Black And By White,
Insulted And Offended By White And By Black,
Loved By Black And By White,
Hated By White And By Black,
Paid Attention By Black And By White,
Ignored By White And By Black,
Pleased By Black And By White,
Angered By White And BY Black,
Enlightened By Black And By White,
Frustrated By White And By Black,
Fascinated By Black And By White,
Bored By White And By Black,
Helped By White And By Black,
Hindered By Black And By White,
Lived With White And With Black,
Lived Apart From Black And From White,
Agreed With White And With Black,
Argued With Black And With White,
Laughed With White And With Black,
Cryed With Black And With White,
Wanted To Assimilate With White And With Black,
Wanted To Segregate From Black And From White,
Never Seen Anyone Who's The Color Of Coal,
Never Seen Anyone Who's The Color Of Snow.
that diversity is a part of the natural order of things
-as natural as the trillion shapes and shades of the flowers of spring
or the leaves of autumn.
that diversity brings new solutions to an ever-changing environment,
and that sameness is not only uninteresting but limiting.
To deny diversity is to deny life.
With all its richness and manifold opportunities.
Thus I affirm my citizenship in a world of diversity,
and with it the responsibility to...
Be tolerant. Live and let live.
Understand that those who cause no harm should not be feared,
ridiculed, or harmed - even if they are different.
Look for the best in others.Be just in my dealings,
with poor and rich, weak and strong,
And whenever possible to defend the young, the old,
the frail, the defenseless.
remembering how fragile the human spirit is.
Live the examined life,
subjecting my motives and actions to the scrutiny of mind and heart
so to rise above prejudice and hatred.
Care.- Gene Griessman
This will be my last poem from Arnold Adoff's book "All the Colors of the Race" that I featured a couple of days ago. There are many more great poems in the book--buy it or check it out from your local library!
We are talking aboutby Arnold Adoff
We are talking about
the ones who pick their friends
because of how black they act
because of how white they can
Sometimes blackness seems too black for me,
and whiteness is too sickly pale;
and I wish every
one were golden from
Golden from the
Here's another great poem from Arnold Adoff that was in the book All the Colors of the Race that I featured yesterday.
On my applicationsby Arnold Adoff
On my applications I can
runner in the middle distance races,
is willing to help you
if you take her as she
Here is a tiny treasure that I found in the library this summer. A book of poems, All the Colors of the Race, written by Arnold Adoff. Based on his own interracial family, Adoff writes from the perspective of his biracial (black/white) daughter, which I find very interesting. At first I was a bit thrown off because I generally prefer poetry to rhyme, however, his style is considered "free verse" poetry. The more I read (and re-read) them, the more I fall in love with them! I hope you do too.
The lady saidby Arnold Adoff
The lady said: what are you going to
when you grow
all the way up?
And I said: a woman.
And she said. No. I mean what are
And I said: a girl.
And she said: No. I mean what do you call
And I said: Honey. Baby. Sweet
If she finds it hard,
I find it easy
to make it hard for her.
The Cold Withinby James Patrick Kinney
Six humans trapped by happenstance
in black and bitter cold
Each possessed a stick of wood,
Or so the story's told.
Their dying fire in need of logs,
the first woman held hers back
For on the faces around the fire
She noticed one was black.
The next man looking 'cross the way
Saw one not of his church
And couldn't bring himself to give
The fire his stick of birch.
The third one sat in tattered clothes
He gave his coat a hitch,
Why should his log be put to use
To warm the idle rich?
The rich man just sat back and thought
Of the wealth he had in store,
And how to keep what he had earned
From the lazy, shiftless poor.
The black man's face bespoke revenge
As the fire passed from his sight,
For all he saw in his stick of wood
Was a chance to spite the white.
And the last man of this forlorn group
Did naught except for gain,
Giving only to those who gave
Was how he played the game.
The logs held tight in death's stilled hands
Was proof of human sin,
They didn't die from the cold without,
They died from the cold within.