EDUC 197B: Mirrors, Windows and Doors of Teaching
in Today’s Classroom
in Today’s Classroom
Explore cultural diversity of today’s classroom through children’s literature. Increase your understanding of the changing demographics in the nation and the impact it has had on the publishing industry. Examine the urgency for future and current teachers to embrace literature and curricula that reflect the life experiences of students in the classroom. Develop awareness about the intersections of race, class and gender in the books students read. Research-based discussions, participation in class and lectures, and thought-provoking analysis of children’s literature will foster development of critical consciousness. Participants will:
- Critique popular children’s literature and develop an understanding of educational equity in the United States.
- Examine your own perspectives, biases and multiple identities (“mirrors”).
- Explore a variety of perspectives in children’s literature to develop a deeper awareness and a broader understanding of others (“windows”).
- Engage with children’s literature as a function of social justice (“doors”).
- Generate research questions and develop criteria for analysis.
- Apply the criteria and reflect on the experience through development of a PowerPoint presentation.
Instructor: Dr. Kristen B. French is the director of the Center for Education, Equity and Diversity at Western Washington University. A charismatic and dynamic assistant professor in the Elementary Education Department and recipient of the 2012 Excellence in Teaching Award, French received her Ph.D. in language, literacy and culture from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst under the mentorship of Dr. Sonia Nieto, a leader in the field of multicultural education. French earned her undergraduate degree from Western with bachelor's degrees in anthropology and elementary education. Her interests include multicultural teacher education, decolonizing theory, indigenous education and critical performative pedagogy.
Class is held Monday through Friday; various hours.
Enrollment is limited to a maximum of 16 students.
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