Three Steps Toward Raising Anti-Racist Kids

Susan LaRonde
July 29, 2017

Jennifer Adair, associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education, is no stranger to discussing race and education. Her research and teaching interests focus on the role of race, culture, and cross-cultural experiences in early childhood education.

In addition to preparing pre-service teachers to address race and inequity in their classrooms, Adair believes it is valuable to help white parents of young white children address these issues with their kids too. According to Adair, young kids can handle learning about social justice issues and do not need to be sheltered from them.

Recently, on KLRU’s Blackademics TV, Adair drew from her experiences with her own children and outlined three steps that she has observed white parents of white children take as they strive to raise anti-racist kids.

  1. Teach children to notice and value differences in race and culture, and to see these differences as normal and wonderful.
  2. Share stories highlighting people of color that stress the characteristics they want their children to have, such as kindness, generosity, and ingenuity.
  3. Dive into difficult and challenging conversations about race and inequities their children may observe.

To learn more, watch, as Adair outlines the three patterns she has observed in white parents of white children as they raise their kids to appreciate the racial differences they see around them.