The last sweeping reform across education asks us to re-examine our three r’s – instead of reading, writing, and arithmetic, our new mantra has become rigor, relevance, and relationships. Following the relationship piece, we are frequently reminded of a now overly used axiom: “students won’t care to learn until they learn you care.” In order to make connections to our students and make our lessons relevant in our classrooms, we must understand the social issues that influence our schools. In an urban setting where diversity exists in so many facets (ethnicity, socio-economic status, race, nationality, political views, religious beliefs, etc.), the challenge of understanding the implications of social structures and the hierarchies of power that reside within them can be difficult to identify – especially to a teacher who is a member of a dominant group. Gary R. Howard writes in his book We Can’t Teach What We Don’t Know (2006), “whites represent 90 % of public school teachers, a figure that will remain high or possibly grow in the next few decades” (p. 4). For all of our students, regardless of race, the importance of becoming aware of the subject of white privilege is imperative if we as a society are to overcome the dominance of one group over another. Examining this issue currently surrounding urban education is of the highest importance, not only to become effective teachers creating relevance and relationships in their classes, but also to create a just society in which these students can live.
Agid, S., & Rand, E. (2007). Teaching beyond tolerance. Radical Teacher, Retrieved
March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
The article discusses various reports published within the issue, including one by Annemarie Hamlin and Constance Joyner on the effects of racism and white privilege on education and another by Nan Stein on the limits of bullying as a language for addressing gender and sexuality-based violence in K-12.
Blum, L. (2004, September). A high school class on race and racism. Radical Teacher, Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
Reports on the efficacy of teaching race and racism on high school students in Massachusetts. Convenience for students; Outperformance of Whites and Asians against Black and Latinos in schools; Likelihood of girls to discuss more on racial achievement gap.
Fishman, S., & McCarthy, L. (2005, December). Talk about race: when student stories and multicultural curricula are not enough. Race, Ethnicity & Education, 8(4), 347-364. Retrieved March 30, 2008, doi:10.1080/13613320500323948
What happens when a White, university teacher of diverse students tries to promote discussion of race by heeding Critical Race Theorists' call for multicultural curricula and student stories? This teacher and his co-investigator discover that adoption of multicultural curricula and privileging of student stories are not enough. That is, despite this teacher's following the advice of Critical Race Theorists, discussions in his classroom about race were counterproductive, with students hardening their conflicting positions and turning deaf ears to one another. The authors suggest two reasons for this. First, the instructor was not self-reflexive about his own White biases. Second, he failed to help students place their stories about race within an historical framework. In other words, he failed to help his students see their stories as representing particular moments in our US national dialogue about racism and ways to de-center White privilege. Thus, in addition to multicultural curricula and student stories, the authors learn that, in this one classroom at least, teacher reflexivity and historical frameworks for student stories are needed for productive talk about race.
Frank, J. (2007, September). Effective discipline across racial lines. Education Digest, 73(1), 62-64. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
The author addresses the topic of white U.S. educators providing feedback to, criticizing, or discipling Black students without fear of being viewed as racist. He explains that in spite of his school's open communication with students' families, this remains a concern. He also notes that it is normal for students of any race to try to avoid responsibility for misbehavior. He discusses white privilege and color-blind thinking, and he presents several common sense suggestions for teacher-student (and family) interactions. He discusses classroom limits, confronting in private, nonjudgmental language, and goal setting.
Hamlin, A., & Joyner, C. (2007). Racism and real life. Radical Teacher, Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
The article presents a series of conversations between an African-American student and a white teacher regarding Mark Twain's "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" at La Sierra University in Riverside, California. It offers information about the views of the student and the teacher concerning the book's language as well as the portrayal of Jim, the main character of the book. According to the authors, the discussions will help educators consider the notions of race, gender and class in the school environment. They state that white students appeared to believe that the book depicts no societal relevance.
Kandaswamy, P. (2007). Beyond colorblindness and multiculturalism. (pp. 6-11). Radical Teacher. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
An essay is presented on the possibilities of anti-racist teaching in the university classroom in the U.S. It outlines the alternatives of pulling apart assumptions of race and class privilege in the school environment. According to the author, educators must apply the idea of colorblind discourse to decenter racism, sexism and classism. She asserts that teachers need to actively resist hegemony in their classrooms.
Kildegaard, L. (2007). Constructive intersections. (pp. 19-23). Radical Teacher. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
An essay is presented on the outcome of teaching "The Piano Lesson," an August Wilson's play about the legacy of American slavery and racial violence, to a group of rural white high school students at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. The purpose of the said teaching is for the students to consider the idea of rural hardship and agricultural struggles. According to the author, both the white and black students debated and treated the play as if it was set in the present day.
Manglitz, E., Johnson-Bailey, J., & Cervero, R. (2005, June). Struggles of hope: How white adult educators challenge racism. Teachers College Record, 107(6), 1245-1274. Retrieved March 30, 2008, doi:10.1111/j.1467-9620.2005.00512.x
The purpose of this study was to understand how White antiracist adult educators challenge racism. Seven participants from 5 different antiracist educational organizations were included. Data were collected over a 5-month period using interviews, documents, and participant observations and were analyzed using the constant comparative method. Results addressed the understandings of racism and White privilege that adult educators bring to their work and how these understandings guide them to challenge racism. A systemic understanding of racism, as well as an understanding of how their own White privilege affects them and People of Color, guided the adult educators' work. Their analyses of racism influenced the participants to take particular and strategic actions to challenge racism. The study has implications for adult educators who recognize the entrenchment of racism in our society and who want to move their abstract understandings to the concrete level of daily interactions and take specific actions within their educational practices. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Parsons, E. (2005, February). From caring as a relation to culturally relevant caring: A white teacher's bridge to black students. Equity & Excellence in Education, 38(1), 25-34. Retrieved March 30, 2008, doi:10.1080/10665680390907884
Though, in theory, black students may have access to equal educational opportunity by occupying the same classroom space as their peers, they do not necessarily enjoy the same quality of experience. This inequality results from the race-related beliefs and norms and white privilege embedded in United States society. This study deconstructed one white teacher's practices with respect to the literature on effective teachers of black students and caring. The idea of culturally relevant caring emerged and was explored in relation to the teacher's actions that enabled black students to access the quality of experience enjoyed by their white counterparts. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Picower, B. (2004, September). Teaching outside one's race. Radical Teacher, Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
Recounts an experience of an elementary teacher teaching outside his race in Oklahoma. Impact of the Ebonics controversy to the Standard English Program; Effect of the political nature the school possess; Lessons learned.
Schniedewind, N. (2005, November). There ain't no white people here!: The transforming impact of teachers' racial consciousness on students and schools. Equity & Excellence in Education, 38(4), 280-289. Retrieved March 30, 2008, doi:10.1080/10665680500299668
This article examines the impact of racial consciousness on the practice of a group of five exemplary teachers, participants in a long-term professional development program in diversity education. The article draws from transcripts of group discussions in which teachers reflect on the development of their consciousness of race, racism, and whiteness and implications for their work. Teachers provide telling narratives, reflecting common themes that emerged in the data analysis that exemplify their consciousness in practice. They describe supporting students of color, educating about stereotyping, addressing white privilege, and challenging institutional racism. The article points to the value of long-term professional development for fostering critical multicultural education in schools. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Toward a white teachers' guide to playing fair: Exploring the cultural politics of multicultural teaching. (2003, January). International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education (QSE), Retrieved March 30, 2008, from Professional Development Collection database.
Multicultural education in teacher preparation programs can emphasize the study of whiteness so as to make whiteness visible, analyze white privilege, and offer ways that white privilege can be used to combat racism. While white race consciousness has been seen as part of the multicultural education agenda for some educators, recently the efficacy of such an approach has been questioned. White race consciousness or antiracist pedagogy has not been shown to bring about teacher competence in diverse classrooms or to raise the academic performance of students of color and poverty. I suggest here that the social relations in the larger society, deeply embedded with notions of deficit thinking, are mapped onto the reality of a largely white professorate preparing a largely white public school teaching force, thereby ensuring the academic failure of certain children. To play fair, then, requires that white teachers recognize when their classroom practices assume assimilation into the dominant culture and their actions exclude the contributions of diverse individuals and groups. I argue for a multicultural education discourse that includes a recognitive view of social justice for guiding white educators in the practice of fair play in diverse classrooms. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Friday, August 1, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
So my grade on Blackboard says that I got a zero for the "Web Presence" assignment... Anyone else? Did I do this wrong? I'm so confused...
Also, for the lesson plans - do we have to include the PowerPoints and activities we're using with the lesson, or do we just write about them?
I'm a bit stressed about this and School Policy and Practice since I'm going to be gone! Yikes!
Posted by Emily at 4:47 PM
cyndi just called me -- we misunderstood the portfolio assignment. you don't have to pick 3-4 standards, you just have to show how 3-4 of the assignments you've done fit into the portfolio. so all of your artifacts/assignments could fit under one standard.
also -- don't forget to read the article under course documents for friday.
also -- don't forget to read the article under course documents for friday.