I originally wanted to write a story about teaching body acceptance in schools, but when I was doing some research I kept coming across lesson plans on body image, acceptance, and diversity. I got to thinking about how important those things are and how little attention these things get. I want to open people's eyes to the importance of teaching these things.
I believe that they could have a huge impact on our world. I'm not saying that I think body image and stuff is the key to all of the world's problems, but I do think it's importance gets downplayed. Adding lessons about diversity, self-love, and body image to school curriculums could make a huge difference in our society.
After working with kids for three years, I have observed that kids seem to be getting worse and worse. Now, I'm not trying to throw on any shade at parents, because I know it's a hard job, but I do think we could do better. These children are going to be the leaders, teachers, doctors, and public servants of the future. So why aren't we making it a point to teach them how to be good human beings?
We can't control what children are taught at home, but by adding a standard curriculum on how to be a decent human being, we can feel confident knowing we set each and every child up for success. By adding lessons of diversity, acceptance, and self-love we could probably tackle the huge issue of bullying.
Just think for a second of all the mean things we hear and see about people who are different from us. Think of all the problems intolerance of diversity causes in our society. Racism, ageism, body shaming, and slut shaming: these are all forms of intolerance that we are taught by society.
When kids see shows making fun of bigger people they think that being overweight is a joke. They think that being overweight means you aren't as capable. Society isn't outright saying "you are irrelevant unless you look like this," but when children see the media making fun of someone whose different, then they may think that if they are different no one will want to be their friend or that they have little worth.
When children of color hear someone shout a racial slur like "go back to your country," they may feel like they are not wanted here. Children shouldn't have to ask their parents why being different is a problem. No child should ever have to go home and tell their parents that they got picked on for being big, Asian, or disabled.
For that reason alone, we need to do a better job at teaching about diversity and acceptance instead of tolerance. We need to teach children that speaking negatively on someone or themselves benefits no one.