If this University of Arizona professor had her way, your children would be learning about LGBT sexuality in the elementary school classroom. Kristen Gunckel an associate professor of Teaching, Learning and Sociocultural Studies at the College of Education, believes that kids should be exposed to queer theory while theyâre still learning their multiplication tables.
During a March 23 lecture entitled âDeep Dish â What Does Queer Theory Have To Do with Teaching Science in Elementary Schools?â Gunckel argued that âqueer theory can be a useful tool for re-imagining elementary science education and elementary science teacher preparation.â
She also advocated for âinviting sexuality into the elementary science classroomâ and âdisrupting preservice elementary teachersâ science teacher identitiesâ in order to somehow ârelease elementary students and their teachers to love and learn science.â
According to a university spokesman speaking on behalf of Gunckel, the idea of âqueeringâ science simply means asking students to think about facts in a different way than which they are accustomed to viewing them.
However, Gunckel has proven herself an outspoken advocate for exposing children to LGBT sexuality in the past. The former middle school science teacher once wrote in an academic paper that science books should include photos of non-hetero people and stop âhidingâ their orientation from impressionable chidren.
She also penned a paper that accused schools of being âhighly homophobic and heterosexist institutionsâ that make sure that âheterosexuality is portrayed as the only normal and natural form of being human.â
Gunckelâs solution: âIn elementary school, it means not hiding sexuality from children. At all levels, it means providing space within the curriculum for students to see themselves and their families. Queering science education means making the invisible visible.â