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Possibilities in Practice

Social Justice Teaching in the Disciplines

Edited By Summer Melody Pennell, Ashley S. Boyd, Hillary Parkhouse and Alison LaGarry

This edited collection illustrates different possibilities for social justice practice in various grade levels, disciplines, and interdisciplinary spaces in P–12 education. Chapters in this unique volume demonstrate teaching with a critical lens, helping students develop critical dispositions, encouraging civic action with students, and teaching about topics inclusive of race, class, gender, and sexuality. Based on empirical research, each contribution is rooted in a critical theoretical framework and characterizes findings from sustained study of pedagogic practice, spanning subject matter from social studies, English Language Arts, music, mathematics, and science. Through this work, both pre- and in-service teachers as well as teacher educators will be inspired to practice social justice in their own classrooms.

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Chapter Seventeen: “Couch the Oppression in Resistance”: Teaching Strategies for Social Change Through U.S. History 11th grade (Hillary Parkhouse)


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“Couch the Oppression IN Resistance”

Teaching Strategies for Social Change Through U.S. History

11th grade


I mean there’s a risk of asking students to be critical, and it’s cynicism. I worry all the time that my students are going to reach this saturation point for learning about past atrocities or injustice, where they’re just going to believe that things have always been bad and will always be bad. And there’s nothing they can do. And basically by oversaturating them with examples, take away their agency and feeling of hope about the possibility for things to be better. I think a lot about whether the critical way that I teach history makes students preconditioned to want to disengage or feel disconnected from the government.


Actually her class makes me love America more because people like her is what make America better.

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