Nov 26, 2008

I'm a Killjoy - Happy Thanksgiving.

In 15 minutes I'll be on my way to Preschool where Ella will be dressed as a Indian and Ms. Preschool Teacher will be a Pilgrim and they will sing turkey songs and have a Thanksgiving feast. I told Ella today that some Indians don't really like Thanksgiving and went on to explain that we gave the Native Americans colds when we met them and then later we kicked them off of their land and made them move some where else. It's what I thought was appropriate for her four year old mind. I couldn't just let the myth of the happy feast go by again this year without throwing a bit of real history in there. Ella agreed that wasn't a very nice thing to do and then added that she never met an Indian and today she was just going to pretend to be one at school but she would just pretend to be happy about eating a feast with the Pilgrims instead of being sad about it. I told her that would be just fine and asked her what she was thankful for and we made a giant thankful list that included everyone we love, marshmallows, toys and birthdays.

Stroller Derby Article:
Are Elementary School Thanksgivings Racist Or Just Outdated?

4 comments:

Jo said...

You so knew I would leave a comment when you wrote this, didn't you? I love how you explained it to El, but could you do me a favor and tell her about the Wompanog, (sp?) and they didn't dress like the Plains indians, nor did they live in tipis, but in birchbark homes? Then I will be perfectly content. Thanks for keeping it real, I appreciate it.

Jenny said...

I knew I'd hear from you today. And I will absolutely teach El some things about the Wompanoag. But I also have to admit that I must look them up first.

Thanks Jo.

arizona said...

You may have to throw in some stories about how the tribes of the Southwest were mistreated, first by the Spaniards and then by the white man's calvary......just to keep me happy too. Our Native Americans were all treated like animals in our quest to expand and progress into the greedy country we have become today. But enough about history and politics, I want to wish you and Dan and Ella a very Happy Thanksgiving and although things may not be as good as we would like them to be, let's be thankful for what we do have. Peace and love.

Jaime said...

Don't worry there:) I do my part to teach second graders the true meaning of Columbus Day as well;) He just wasn't the best of fellows!