An Inclusive Start to the School Year!
It’s the beginning of the school year! As an educator, you have the opportunity to help ALL students – including gender creative kids and kids with same sex parents – feel welcome! You have the opportunity to create a classroom where ALL children thrive.
Below are a few tips for making your classroom LGBTQ and gender inclusive from the very beginning of the school year.
- Send home a parent/student survey to obtain valuable information about your students and their families, including the student’s pronouns, their caregivers’ pronouns, what the students call their caregivers, etc. We provide an example survey here: Rainbow Kit Student Survey
- Introduce yourself using your name AND pronouns. “Hello, my name is Jess, and my pronouns are they/them/theirs” or “Hello, my name is Maria, and my pronouns are she/her/hers.” It is not best practice to ask students in the class to share their pronouns. Instead, if you role model this, it shows students (and their parents) that you are a safe person who respects them and they can share their pronouns when they are comfortable. Additionally, it is not appropriate to say “preferred pronouns”. Pronouns are not a preference.
- Use gender and family inclusive language in the classroom and during meetings with families. Instead of “boys and girls” or “moms and dads”, use some of the inclusive suggestions below!
- Include a diversity statement in the family handbook. Diversity Statement for Parent Handbooks
- Read an LGBTQ and gender inclusive book during the first week of school. Children and their families will feel supported and respected if they see that the books you read in class have characters that look like them. Representation matters! Here are RAN’s LGBTQ and Gender Inclusive Book Recommendations. We also have a long list of books that are inclusive of Black, LatinX, Indigenous, and other People of Color here.