Hedreich Nichols

What I Like About You

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Small Bites Friday Five 3-05-21 

20-30m – Read and internalize the outcomes of favoritism (including damage to your reputation) from this UCLA Psych Ed article based on work by Emily Cheng. The article cites studies going back to 1983. The phrase ‘bias in education’ may be new to some, but it is definitely not a new concept.

15-20m – Read this K-12 Dive synopsis and listen to Verna Myers’ Ted talk on mitigating implicit bias.

10-15m – Use this link to watch the #SmallBites Bias collection. If we reduce the big words to our own small actions, we will begin to see change for the better.

5-10m – Dig in to Jennifer Gonzales’ Single Point Rubric strategy. It will not only help you mitigate bias, it will also revolutionize the way you give feedback AND the time it takes to give valuable feedback.  

0-5m – Take this fun quiz to get a feel for the kinds of questions you can ask yourself and the kinds of preferences you should monitor yourself for.

And as promised, a name list randomizer from ClassTools.net,  so you can spin the wheel and randomly call on students.

You know that saying that you wear 20% of your clothing 80% of the time? I remember Oprah doing a whole show around it eons ago that I never hear because that statistic grabbed my attention and locked me in. As I thought about my favorite jeans, my favorite sweater, my favorite PJs with the holes that I just can’t let go of, I thought about why those things mean something.

Are they attached to a memory? Is it the way they feel? The way I feel when I am in them? Pretty much every experience and interaction connects itself to some feeling or preference we already have about something else. The color periwinkle reminds me of my favorite Easter dress ever. It was long and had puff sleeves and a sash. The question, ‘what is your favorite color?’ reminds me of my childhood bestie @Creoleladybug. It’s red and I have no idea why that question always remind me of us and our 5 year old selves. My student, the one talking about why we haven’t changed school since the industrial times so that it reflects the needs of modern society reminds me of who I want to be when I grow up. And the student who often quotes statistics and facts touted by less reliable media organizations without checking their validity reminds me of why I created #SmallBites. My conversations with each of them is valuable; they help me grow.

There is always a connection to something in us in every interaction and the more aware we are of those connections, the more we are empowered to mitigate the effects of unconscious bias in our relationships.

Trust me, you are playing favorites. But you are also, hopefully, actively aware of it and working to course correct. If you are not, consider this your wake-up call. We are all works in progress.

Use a randomizer. Use a single point rubric. All. The. Time. And the next time you eat a popsicle, pull out your favorite coffee mug or step into your favorite worn jeans, remember, there is always a reason you have your favorites. Just make sure those reasons don’t cloud your judgment and adversely impact your relationships.