Microaggressions—Everyday Indignities.Prepare yourself for the Discussion as follows:
First, review the video “Microaggressions in Everyday Life.” This time, pay particular attention to: PLEASE CHECK ATTACHED FILE
- The three definitions of microaggession
- The forms and consequences of microaggressions
- Hidden messages they send to the target, and
- Ways to prevent using microaggressions
Read the following scenarios:
- Matt works as an early childhood specialist in the pediatric unit of a hospital. His latest “client” is 5 year-old Anh, a Vietnamese immigrant. Whenever Matt talks to her, she casts her eyes down. Her answers are short and her voice is very quiet. Today, Matt sits down next to Anh, brings his face close to the little girl’s, and says softly: “Why are you so quiet? We want to know what you think. Be more verbal! Look at me! What you think is important to us, you know. We want to get to know you better. You have to speak up more, okay?”
- Ann and Alejandro are coworkers in a preschool. Alejandro is a newcomer to the staff and Ann has been especially helpful these first months. During one of their shared lunch hours, Alejandro confesses: “You know, Ann, I did not think it would be so hard. I mean, I knew when they hired me that I would be the only Latino teacher. But now, I feel so lonely and, like, most of the others really don’t want anything to do with me.” Ann takes his hand and sighs: “I’m so sorry, Alejandro. And you know, as a woman, I know exactly what you go through, being a racial minority.”
Now choose two scenarios and, referring to both, respond to these questions:
- Using the categories presented by Dr. Sue, what types of microaggression can you identify in the two scenarios you chose?
- What is the hidden “message” each of the targets of microaggression received, (i.e., what was implied but not said)?
- What power issues can you discern: Who had power over whom and in what ways? Who was marginalized and in what ways?
- Now choose one of the two remaining scenarios and imagine that you are the target of the microaggression: What emotions do you think you would experience?
- In what ways might knowledge about and refined awareness of microaggressions help you in your interactions with children and families?