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Education - Social Studies Resources (Elementary)

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Cultural authencity

These resources invite you to consider how the language and images in children's books work to construct particular versions of the world - and to reflect on whether they authentically reflect the reality of other cultures.

"The reader's sense of truth in how a specific cultural experience has been represented within a book, particularly when the reader is an insider to the culture portrayed in that book, is probably the most common understanding of cultural authenticity."  Stories matter: the complexity of cultural authenticity in children's literature, p 5.

"The cumulative message inherent in years of schooling in which children seldom see anyone in a book who resembles themselves and who shares their cultural values, attitudes, and behaviors, or in which children see themselves portrayed as laughable stereotyypes, is that these children do not count and are not valued by society at large."  Kaleidoscope: A multicultural booklist for grades K-8, p xiv

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