The Danger of Silence

Why we need to talk to our kids about race and difference

Colorblind isn’t working. We must build capacity in our children to understand the world around them. We must equip them to be global citizens.

For parents and teachers trying to navigate conversations about race, class, identity, and difference, communication is complicated. These parents are trying to do something they have never seen, since so much of parenting and teaching draws on our own experiences as children. We try to emulate the efforts of our parents and teachers or reject and chart new paths. Yet when it comes to talking about race and difference, we have nothing in our archives.

TEDx, race and difference

It takes courage to examine your own lens and connect to how that impacts children.  As an educator, I have seen the trauma in my classroom as people from diverse backgrounds attempt to talk about issues of race and difference. The more I work with college students the more confident I am that conversations need to happen with younger children.

We need more brave adults. If we have any hope of raising courageous children, like who are willing to tackle huge systemic inequity or make meaningful connections and partnerships with others, we must provide support to the adults in their lives so that they can engage them in developmentally appropriate ways.

We are all in this together. We have to start talking if we want our children to experience a more just world.

About TEDx Depaul

In April 2017, speakers from across the DePaul community came together to challenge thoughts and inspire ideas through a series of talks and presentations.

TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event.