This is an up-to-the-moment, engaging, multicultural introduction to education and teaching and the challenges and opportunities they present. Together, the four authors bring a rich blend of theory and practical application to this groundbreaking text. Jeannie Oakes is a leading education researcher and former director of the UCLA teacher education program. Martin Lipton is an education writer and consultant and has taught in public schools for 31 years. Lauren Anderson and Jamy Stillman are former public school teachers, now working as teacher educators.
This unique, comprehensive foundational text considers the values and politics that pervade the U.S. education system, explains the roots of conventional thinking about schooling and teaching, asks critical questions about how issues of power and privilege have shaped and continue to shape educational opportunity, and presents powerful examples of real teachers working for equity and justice. Taking the position that a hopeful, democratic future depends on ensuring that all students learn, the text pays particular attention to inequalities associated with race, social class, language, gender, and other social categories and explores teachers' role in addressing them. The text provides a research-based and practical treatment of essential topics, and it situates those topics in relation to democratic values; issues of diversity; and cognitive, sociocultural, and constructivist perspectives on learning. The text shows how knowledge of education foundations and history can help teachers understand the organization of today's schools, the content of contemporary curriculum, and the methods of modern teaching. It likewise shows how teachers can use such knowledge when thinking about and responding to "headline" issues like charter schools, vouchers, standards, testing, and bilingual education, to name just a few.
Central to this text is a belief that schools can and must be places of extraordinary educational quality and institutions in the service of social justice. Thus, the authors address head-on tensions between principles of democratic schooling and competition for always-scarce high-quality opportunities. Woven through the text are the voices of a diverse group of teachers, who share their analyses and personal anecdotes concerning what "teaching to change the world" means and involves.