HFP’s social curriculum and emphasis on being friendly and inclusive provides the foundation from which to notice and speak up when things are not kind, friendly or fair. After learning a bit about MLK Jr. and the civil rights movement over the past few class sessions, we introduced the story of Ruby Bridges, the first African-American child to desegregate the all-white Elementary School in New Orleans, Louisiana school in 1960. We looked at pictures of angry white-skinned people who held signs that did not want Ruby to join the school and we checked out pictures of mostly black-skinned people who held signs in favor of desegregating. We invited parents/adult caregivers to model the way with the morning’s family share prompt: “If you were there when Ruby was walking into the school, what could your sign say to welcome Ruby? ”
Ruby, come play with us! * We are with you! Please join us, Ruby! You are an important part of our school. * Ruby, let’s play and make art together. *Bienvenida! Quieres jugar conmigo? (Welcome! Do you want to play with me?) * You belong here! Can’t wait to meet you!
Once in the classroom, we played and discussed the story of Ruby Bridges and invited children to make their own welcoming signs they could later carry in our march.
Learn More: This 3 minute video about Ruby Bridges might be a good one to share and discuss with your children.