Synopses & Reviews
What does it mean to teach for social justice? This book puts the term into action for the classroom, community, and personal and professional development. Teaching for Social Justice? sets out a five-fold framework of social justice literacy: Functional, Critical, Relational, Democratic, and Visionary. It them looks at four K-12 educators--Margaret, Joe, Julia, and Paul--as they exercise these literacies in their schools, communities, and lives.These teachers come together with the author, a university researcher, to discuss their experiences inside the classroom and out. Throughout the book, short outtakes from these discussions allow these teachers to share problems and insights from their work with students and colleagues who are straight and gay; black, white, Latino, Asian, and Indian; quiet and vocal; submissive and disruptive.In the process, they show teachers how to confront racism and sexism, overcome inertia as well as acting-out, counteract resistance to change, and put principles of social justice into practice every day. Their voices will ring true to teachers everywhere--urban and rural; in public, private, and alternative schools; throughout every region of the U.S. Teaching for Social Justice? is that rare book that can provoke a rethinking of educational philosophy even as it helps get teachers through the day.
The term social justice pervades educational publications, programs, and curricular materials. Rarely, however, is the substantive meaning of this label made explicit or publicly debated outside of the university setting. Teaching for Social Justice? Voices from the Front Lines examines the process of four K-12 educators and a university-based researcher discussing, studying, and acting on the potential power of social justice. Through frequent, lively, and complex meetings, these educators examine their varying educational philosophies, practices, and teaching sites. Using experimental writing methods and qualitative methodology, this book bridges the great divide between teacher and academic discourses. North analyzes the complex, interconnected competencies pursued in the name of social justice, including functional, critical, relational, democratic, and visionary literacies. In doing so, she reveals the power of cross-institutional, democratic inquiry on social issues in education.