Our picks for books, videos, websites, and other social justice resources 19.2

Curriculum Resources

Gender in Urban Education:
Strategies for Student Achievement

By Alice E. Ginsberg, Joan Poliner Shapiro, and Shirley P. Brown
(Heinemann, 2004). 183 pp. $21.

A unique book that combines a lucid analysis of current research, a description of several gender-equity school programs, and specific teaching ideas. Issues examined include gender equity, critical teaching, bullying, and bias. Very useful for middle and high school teachers.

The Impossible Will Take a While:
A Citizen’s Guide to Hope in a Time of Fear

By Paul Rogat Loeb
(Basic Books, 2004). 422 pp. $15.95.

A wonderful collection of nearly 50 essays from some of the world’s foremost social justice activists writing about hope, courage, and struggle for a more humane world. The short essays and their eloquent, poetic style lend themselves to a variety of uses in middle and high school language arts and social studies classrooms.

Citizen Challenges to Corporate Power

By Kevin Danaher and Jason Mark
(Routledge, 2003). 368 pp. $25.

This book challenges “the divine right of corporations” to rule our society. A concise history of the role of corporate power through U.S. history starts the book, followed by five powerful stories of grassroots movements against corporations in the area of tobacco, sweatshops, the World Trade Organization, and human rights.

The No-Nonsense Guide to Water

By Maggie Black
(Verso Press and the New Internationalist, 2004). 144 pp. $10.

Like other books in the No-Nonsense series, this informative handbook is packed with facts, charts, and essays that help teachers and students understand how water has become one of the most important resources in the world and how inequality in access to water is a global crisis. An excellent resource for science and math teachers.

The No-Nonsense Guide to World Poverty

By Jeremy Seabrook
(Verso Press and the New Internationalist, 2003). 134 pp. $10.

A handbook packed with facts, vignettes, and essays on the roots, scope, and impact of world poverty. An excellent resource for social studies and math teachers.

An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire

By Arundhati Roy
(South End Press, 2004). 156 pp. $12.

A collection of speeches by international global justice activist Roy that clearly and poetically outline the hypocrisy behind the U.S. government’s use of the term “democracy” as it builds a “new American empire.” The consequences of U.S. policies are explained in ways that will leave readers outraged, while her descriptions of resistance offer hope. Ideal for high-school students and excellent background reading for teachers at all grade levels.

Racism on Trial:
The Chicano Fight for Justice

By Ian F. Haney López
(Harvard University Press, 2003). 324 pp. $27.95.

A detailed account of the high school student activism by Chicano students in the Los Angeles area in 1968 and the subsequent rebellions and trials. Useful for teachers who want to share some little-known history of student activism with their students.

Speaking Out:
Storytelling and Creative Drama for Children

By Jack Zipes
(Routledge, 2004). 296 pp. $21.95.

A remarkable book that argues convincingly that storytelling and drama can be used to confront the epidemic of rote learning and testing that dominates schools. Zipes, a respected expert in storytelling, describes several projects in which students developed not only their creativity, but their critical skills, to confront injustice in their lives.

Teaching and Learning About Multicultural Literature:
Students Reading Outside Their Culture in a Middle School Classroom

By Janice Hartwick Dressel
(International Reading Association, 2003). 174 pp. $22.95.

This book examines what happened when 123 mostly white middle school students read novels written by people of color. Teacher strategies, student writings, and reflections by both the classroom teacher and university researcher make this a helpful book.

Teaching Green:
The Middle Years

Edited by Tim Grant and Gail Littlejohn
(New Society Publishers, 2004). 256 pp. $22.95.

A teacher-friendly collection of more than 50 lessons that deal with environmental issues including water, deforestation, consumption, and ecological values. Emphasis is placed on personal responsibility, sometimes at the expense of ignoring global corporate responsibility.

Policy Matters

Beyond Diversity Day:
A Q&A on Gay and Lesbian Issues in Schools

By Arthur Lipkin
(Rowman and Littlefield, 2004). $24.95.

An essential guide for educators and policymakers who want to understand and affirm sexuality differences. Written in a question and answer format, this book includes a masterful presentation of research and practice suggestions for principals, counselors, teachers, and parents.

High Stakes Education:
Inequality, Globalization, and Urban School Reform

By Pauline Lipman
(Routledge, 2004). 227 pp. $25.95.

A unique analysis that looks at the big issues of the global economy and the specifics of gentrification and school reform in Chicago. Issues of race, class, and urban education policy are examined with a critical eye.

Setting the Record Straight:
Responses to Misconceptions About Public Education in the U.S.
(2nd ed.)

By Gerald W. Bracey
(Heinemann, 2004). 211 pp. $21.

An important tool for those who work to defend and improve public schools. Educational researcher Bracey has updated his guide that presents data and arguments on issues including teacher quality, testing and achievement, NCLB, vouchers, funding, charters, and more.

Teacher Leadership

By Ann Lieberman and Lynne Miller
(Jossey-Bass, 2004). 100 pp. $20.

A short polemic convincingly argues that teacher leadership is a key element in school reform. Several specific examples from around the country are explained in detail.

Picture Books

Birthday in the Barrio/ Cumpleaños en el barrio

By Mayra L. Dole, illustrated by Tonel
(Children’s Book Press, 2004). 32 pp. $16.95 (hardback).

Eight-year-old Chavi helps her sister’s friend find a way to throw a big quinces (15th) birthday party, even though the family has little money. By bringing the community together to help a homeless shelter, Chavi shows what working together can accomplish. Bilingual.


By Juan Felipe Herrera, illustrated by Ernesto Cuevas Jr.
(Children’s Book Press, 2004). 32 pp. $16.95 (hardback).

Tomasito has just moved to a new school and has trouble finding friends because he is different—he was born with spina bifida, which prevents him from walking. His father buys him a featherless bird who is also different and together they figure out how to realize their dreams. Bilingual.

Henry Climbs a Mountain

By D. B. Johnson
(Houghton Mifflin Co., 2003). 32 pp. $15.

A delightful story with sparse text about a bear who is jailed because he refuses to pay his taxes to a state that allows slavery. Modeled after an incident in the life of Henry David Thoreau, it provides teachers a creative way to introduce this great American activist and abolitionist to very young students.



By Justine Shapiro, B. Z. Goldberg, and Carlos Bolado.
102 min. DVD or VHS. $79.

A powerful film that looks at the Israel/Palestine conflict through eyes of seven Palestinian and Israeli children. Their personal stories and the background information provide a useful tool for teachers to approach this controversial subject. Much of the film is in Hebrew and Arabic with English subtitles. A new teaching guide accompanies the DVD.


In addition to the Global Exchange/Rethinking Schools “From the World to Our Classrooms” tours [see ad on page 56], Global Exchange conducts short-term “reality tours” to more than 20 countries around the world, including Iran, Vietnam, Mexico, and South Africa. Participants learn about vital issues affecting local communities through visits with community leaders, teachers, women’s organizations, and more. Continuing education credit available for teachers. Write realitytours@globalexchange.org, visit www.globalexchange.org/tours or call 800-497-1994, ext. 233.

* Available from www.teachingforchange.org.

Resources compiled and reviewed by Bob Peterson.