Last week, the team did a happy dance on hearing the news that Wales would be the first UK nation to make the teaching of BAME histories mandatory in schools. Being a Welsh company, we felt incredibly proud of our country (and government) for taking this important topic so seriously.
Since Sweet was born around 10 years ago, we have been passionate about youngsters learning about BAME history. In fact, a whole Sweet book (Global Citizenship) was dedicated to it in our Personal Social Development (PSD) resource.
We’re pleased to say that our new Personal Growth and Wellbeing (PGW) resource continues to teach about the importance of culture and diversity, whilst maintaining a strong focus on wellbeing throughout.
First and foremost, when creating the new characters that guide Sweet learners through the books, we wanted to ensure that we were representing a wide range of backgrounds and nationalities. All of our characters are racially diverse and represent different ethnicities and cultures. You can read more about the thoughts behind our characters here: https://www.sweet.education/post/introducing-the-sweet-characters
Throughout our eight books, you will also find a huge number of projects and activities which focus on teaching your students about BAME history and racism. These activities include thought provoking questions and tasks, including:
Challenging assumptions based on different cultures, colours, races, religions, sexualities and nationalities
Discussing historical events that were influenced by stereotypes and considering how these events have influenced and shaped society’s views today
Writing to, and learning about, other people from around the world using a PenPal system
Identifying harmful behaviours, stereotypes and prejudice within the community, and creating a campaign poster to highlight and share the best ways to challenge these issues
Learning about The Equality Act 2010 and understanding how the nine ‘protected characteristics’ are in place to prevent discrimination and safeguard us all.
This year, we also created a free worksheet the mark Black History Month (UK). Activities on this four-page worksheet include discussing and researching Black History Month, watching a video to provoke discussions on racism and diversity in the UK, taking part in a quiz about influential BAME people, and designing an event to celebrate BAME culture within your school. You can download this free resource here: https://www.sweet.education/sweetresources
We also decided to dedicate part of our World Teachers’ Day worksheet to BAME history, by giving students the opportunity to research Betty Campbell (following the unveiling of a beautiful new statue in Cardiff), who made history for being the first black head teacher in Wales.
These resources (which are also available to download from https://www.tes.com/member/SweetEd) have already been used over 100 times!
If you’ve made it to the end of this blog and are thinking, “so what?”, we wanted you to know that whether you’re already working with us, or just thinking about it, we will continue to commit ourselves to supporting the teaching of BAME history in schools. We are thrilled by this exciting decision from the Welsh Government and we are so excited to be supporting this incredible step forward in education.
If you’re not already working with us and are looking to kickstart the teaching of BAME history in your school, why not jump on board with Sweet and make use of our fully prepared resources, excellent centre support, and all the lovely extras that we offer. We’d love for you to join the Sweet community, and we look forward to supporting you and your students on the journey towards better BAME education.