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dc.contributor.authorRitchie, James Scott
dc.description.abstractThis qualitative in-depth interview study's purpose was to explore what influenced eight experienced P-12 critical educators across the United States to teach for social justice and how these influences might inform teacher education. Starting with an examination of the critical pedagogical practices these teachers enact, this study traced backward participants' prior life experiences and teacher preparation experiences leading them to teach critically. The study made two arguments: 1) in spite of the pressure to teach students to read the word (content knowledge) without reading the world (the sociopolitical context of the learner), critical educators must teach the word through the world, 2) and what enables critical educators to teach for social justice is a combination of radicalizing events, networks, and mentors. Eight critical P-12 educators from various regions of the United States who had previously published about their critical teaching practice participated in the study. Following Seidman (2006), the researcher conducted a series of three in-depth life history interviews with each participant, the first two on location at participants' schools, homes, and nearby cafés, and the third by telephone. The researcher analyzed data using an inductive, thematic analysis, guided by a Freirean theoretical framework of critical pedagogy. The study concluded that critical educators teach their students by connecting the standard curriculum both to students' lives and to a broader sociopolitical analysis that situates individual issues within a framework of power relations. These educators help their students read the world in order to transform it through having them take agentic positions in the classroom and take action in their school and community. The biggest influences on these critical educators were global and local events that radicalized them, progressive social and professional networks, and radicalizing mentors. These findings have implications for critical pedagogy and teacher education—namely, that teacher education programs need to better connect to activist organizations and mentors who demonstrate a commitment to social justice, as well as rethink admission and recruitment processes to increase the number of candidates already committed to critical pedagogy and social justice education.
dc.subjectCritical Pedagogy, Social Justice, Teachers, Teacher Education, Interviews, Elementary Secondary Education, Teaching Methods, Social Change
dc.titleWalking the talk
dc.title.alternativethe practices and influences of eight critical P-12 educators
dc.description.departmentLanguage and Literacy Education
dc.description.majorLanguage Education
dc.description.advisorJobeth Allen
dc.description.committeeJobeth Allen
dc.description.committeeSally Zepeda
dc.description.committeeBob Fecho

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