Saturday, October 13, 2007

How do you like your coffee?

So I'm worried that my storytimes are really white, and I don't know if reading books with pretty colored kids is enough to make my programs welcoming to everyone. So I was researching children's rhymes from difference cultures and I found this site: CocoJams, which documents African-American children's rhymes.

The webmaster and brain-mother of the site, Azizi Powell, has a scholarly background and a smart way of moderating other people's contributions. And my favorite part was discovering that some of the jumprope rhymes I used to sing were literally white-washed. Check this out. I grew up singing:
I like coffee, I like tea
I like the boys and the boys like me!
Apparently, some other girls were singing:
I like coffee, I like tea
I like a black boy and he likes me
So step back, white boy, you don't shine
I'll get a black boy to beat your behind.
Should've known the real things was more raw than what we sang in the suburbs ...

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