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ERIC Number: EJ821738
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Oct
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-1521-0960
Black Ants and Buddhism: Second Graders Use Classroom Conflict to Explore World Religions
Cowhey, Mary
Multicultural Perspectives, v10 n4 p218-223 Oct 2008
Human nature draws people to conflict. They become curious about the overheard argument at the next table in a restaurant, or a conflict between parent and child in the supermarket. Too often textbooks and other teacher-proof curriculum for young children provide a pat and happy presentation, devoid of conflict. Not surprisingly, these materials and this approach to teaching often bore many children, who are then labeled "inattentive." The small-scale invasion of black ants into a second graders' classroom, met by vigorous stomping and a cry of protest, engaged every member of the class, within seconds. Everyone had an opinion. Everyone cared. In this article, the author describes how the black ants in their classroom helped them explore a variety of perspectives, helped them to learn, then compare and contrast the rules of a variety of spiritual traditions. The ants helped them look at ants and the world and themselves as Americans through others' eyes. (Contains 5 figures.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Grade 2
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A