Today was our 'How It Feels to Be Colored Me' bag day, where we read the Zora Neale Hurston essay the previous day, focusing at her conclusion, in which she writes about seeing herself as a "brown bag of miscellany." The next day - today - we all brought in our own bag of miscellany and presented to the class.
Most kids remembered. Some put some thought into it. Some clearly did it just before class, as the girl with the McDonald's bag, in which she had her I-Pod (to represent her love of music), her pencil (to represent her love of writing), and her lip gloss (to represent her girly-girlishness). But others were very moving and revealing.
The one I remember most didn't bring a bag, though. He forgot. But as we came to this young man, this quiet kid with glasses who has come late every day this week, sitting in the corner, he stomped his feet, saying that it represented him being in school, and that's important, because of the pressure he feels to be the first male in his extended family to graduate high school. And that was cool, and gutsy, and made me pretty glad I'd done this slightly cheesy activity.
2 years ago