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“Who was scared?”: Entering Into Reflections Towards Change as Critical Social Educators

Mon, April 12, 2:50 to 4:20pm EDT (2:50 to 4:20pm EDT), SIG Sessions, SIG-Literature Paper and Symposium Sessions


This presentation discusses how an elementary teacher facilitated critical conversations about race and racial injustice with her first-grade students. Drawing from critical social education, our collaborative teacher-researcher team closely examined the whole-class read-aloud events with two picturebooks focused on race and racial injustice. We point to the need for reflection toward change among critical social educators to enhance critical literature discussion among young children. By reflection toward change we speak to the practice of critically reconsidering teaching beliefs and practices that impel a critical revision in practice. In the classroom vignettes, we highlight how we encountered successes and missteps in our efforts to engage young children in critical literature discussion and how that process is deeply ingrained in the work of decentering whiteness.