Editorial: Defending Immigrant Students — in the Streets and in Our Classrooms

It has always been an educator’s responsibility to act in solidarity with vulnerable students. But with President Donald Trump’s September declaration that he will end DACA, we are called on to be more audacious, more resolute, and more imaginative in our solidarity with the 800,000 undocumented young people who now face a frightening uncertainty about their future in the United States.

Inclusivity is Not a Guessing Game

An elementary teacher tells how she works to include her Muslim students in the life of her classroom. “We can use or create curriculum and projects that allow students to learn about and incorporate their culture and religious practices if they want to. We can be deliberate in including, making space for, and recognizing our students in all aspects of their identities. Making schools inclusive doesn’t have to be a guessing game.”

“I Believe You”

To all of my students: I believe you.

Every Monday morning Lilly would walk into our 1st-grade classroom with downcast eyes and a heavy heart. She would wait for everyone to settle in and then quietly beckon me over to her seat and say, “My head hurts.”

It became a routine. I would stroke her head and say, “I know you miss your dad. Let’s try participating in school and see if it helps you feel better.” This seems like a reasonable response from a seasoned veteran teacher in her 31st year of teaching. My message to Lilly was I understand children, I understand your life, and I know what is best for you.

Black is Beautiful

A kindergarten teacher uses images, literature, poetry, and collages — as well as her own history — to challenge students’ implicit bias and preconceived notions surrounding the color black and to teach the lesson that Black is beautiful.

Prizes as Curriculum

A paraprofessional exposes the harm of substituting compliance for content at a school for special needs students.

Boys in Dresses

One of a Kind, Like Me/Unico como yo by Larin Mayeno // Illustrated by Robert Liu-Trujillo // Blood Orange Press, 2016 Jacob’s New Dress by Sarah and Ian Hoffman // […]

Other People’s Lives

An introduction to persona poems, which ask students “to find that place inside themselves that connects with a moment in history, literature, life.”

Celebrating Skin Tone

An early elementary school teacher combines a science lesson and poetry to encourage children to celebrate their own skin tone and that of their classmates.

Sex Talk on the Carpet

Instead of leaving “the puberty talk” to the nurse, an elementary teacher incorporates age-appropriate discussion into her regular classroom routine.

Martin Luther King Jr. and the Common Core

The chief architect of the Common Core created a model lesson of a close reading of King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” A teacher from Birmingham compares that to King’s own critical reading of the “word” and the “world.”

New Teacher Book cover

The New Teacher Book-3rd Edition

Newly revised and expanded third edition! This expanded third edition of The New Teacher Book grew out of Rethinking Schools workshops with early career teachers. It offers practical guidance on […]

Teaching for Black Lives book cover

Teaching for Black Lives

Teaching for Black Lives grows directly out of the movement for Black lives. We recognize that anti-Black racism constructs Black people, and Blackness generally, as not counting as human life. […]

Reading, Writing, and Rising Up

Reading, Writing, and Rising Up- 2nd Edition

For almost two decades, teachers have looked to Reading, Writing, and Rising Up as a trusted text to integrate social justice teaching in language arts classrooms. This accessible, encouraging book […]

Rethinking Bilingual Education book cover

Rethinking Bilingual Education

Rethinking Bilingual Education is an exciting new collection of articles about bringing students’ home languages into our classrooms. How do we bring social justice curriculum into our bilingual classrooms? How […]

Rethinking Popular Culture book cover

Rethinking Popular Culture and Media – 2nd Edition

Rethinking Popular Culture and Media begins from the premise that the “popular” is political. Whether it’s Disney and Barbie, or Snapchat and Vine, youth navigate, shape, and repurpose popular culture. […]