TEACHING IN THESE CONTENTIOUS TIMES

“That’s whiteman’s bullshit!!!” Steve W.  calls out from the last row.

I freeze.

“That’s white man’s bullshit.  You’re just repeating some white man’s bullshit and we don’t have to listen to it!!!”

I like Steve a lot.  He’s a good guy.  And smart. On the basketball team.  Funny. Only he’s not being funny. He’s dead serious and the class goes silent except for a couple of “whoa’s”  and “whoo’s”  and “he tole her’s.”

Thirty years later,  I can be there again in an instant –  seeing myself through their eyes.. this thirty four year old white, Jewish woman pretending she knows something she doesn’t…. speaking with an authority which isn’t mine…   seeing my classroom – with the posters of Shakespeare and Chaucer and Hawthorne and Twain  — these icons of greatness staring down at all of us –  none of them looking anything like my students.  Or me for that matter.

–  Excerpt from Chalkdust by Marsha Pincus

TEACHING OUT LOUD

Workshops for Educators in Contentious Times

In this interactive workshop, we will explore the power of teachers’ stories to generate knowledge in the field of education through systematic and intentional inquiry into the moments of dissonance and recognition.

Email me to discuss how we can custom-make a workshop for your school, your program, or your organization.

Learn more about Marsha’s teaching career and academic work.