Gay and Lesbian Connection

Support and Acceptance for the Gay and Lesbian Community

Archive for March, 2010

It’s Elementary

March 24th, 2010 by Admin

For anyone working with kids—here is a great resource.  It’s Elementary.  This amazing documentary film should be mandatory for teachers to watch.  Children have questions.  This film gives adults ways to talk with kids about prejudice toward gays.  I saw it years ago and loved it.

It’s Elementary takes cameras into classrooms across the U.S. to look at one of today’s most controversial topics – whether and how gay issues should be discussed in schools. No political debate here.  The film takes the point of view of the school children. At its heart are inspiring scenes in which elementary and middle school teachers find creative ways to confront anti-gay prejudice.

It’s Elementary is the first film of its kind to address anti-gay prejudice by providing adults with practical lessons on how to talk with kids about gay people. Hailed as “a model of intelligent directing,” It’s Elementary shows that children are eager and able to wrestle with stereotypes and absorb new facts about what it means to be gay or lesbian.

Since it aired on more than 100 public television stations in 1999, It’s Elementary has fueled a growing movement of educators and parents — gay and straight alike — who are committed to preventing pervasive homophobia and anti-gay violence. The film shows what happens when kids in kindergarten through eighth grade discuss lesbian- and gay-related topics in age-appropriate ways. It’s Elementary models excellent teaching about family diversity, name-calling, stereotypes, and community building.

It’s Elementary has won numerous awards, has been acquired by nearly 3,000 educational institutions, and has received widespread acclaim from educators, policymakers, parents and religious leaders.  Check it out!

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Book Review for The Rest of the Way

March 1st, 2010 by Admin

The Rest of the Way

by Enid Duchin Jackowitz
Create Space Publishing
Reviewed by:
Dave Parker, PFLAG National Board of Directors
Past President of PFLAG Transgender Network
Recipient of the Human Rights Campaign Legacy Award 2010

What a wonderful book!

The Rest of the Way refers to the Talmudic story many Christians think of as the Prodigal Son.  In the Talmudic version, when the king asks his son to come home, the son replies that he cannot travel that far.  The king responds, “Then come as far as you can, and I will meet you the rest of the way.”
This book is about Ms. Jackowitz’ journey the rest of the way when her older son comes out to her as gay.
There are a number of books about coming out by gay, lesbian, bi, and transgender people telling their stories.  There are also a number of books by therapists and other professionals dissecting the struggles most gender variant people go through.  The Rest of the Way is more about how coming to terms with the author’s son’s gay identity leads the author toward much greater awareness of herself.
Like many of us, Ms Jackowitz’ life was constrained by her need to meet other people’s standards.  This need is deeply ingrained in all of us.  We learn from our earliest awareness that some actions and attitudes are accepted (or demanded) in our social environment while others are taboo.
Accepting her son’s reality meant giving up many of those acceptable attitudes and accepting many of those she was taught were taboos.
The Rest of the Way takes us along on her journey.  It is one those of us who love our children must also travel.  Our journeys require a great deal of thoughtful insight into our own needs and recognition that we cannot accept changes in someone else without changing ourselves.

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