Ever since "Mr. Polk's War" led to the appropriation of a huge section of Mexico in 1848-including California- the nature of the U.S.-Mexico border has been in question. As Mexican Americans will often say, "We didn't cross the border, the border crossed us." The articles in our Beyond the Border section in this issue explore different dimensions of this struggle over the line between Mexico and the United States. While the U.S. government seems intent on "securing the border" with bigger walls, educators have a different role: to help our students explore the nature of those walls and their impact on people's lives-and to work for justice for our students.
Table of Contents
- "The Laptops Are Coming! The Laptops Are Coming!" By Sarah Heller McFarlane Things to think about before the laptops arrive in your classroom.
A Time to End the Silences
By the Editors of Rethinking Schools"When texts don't talk about racism, when standards don't mention racism, when teachers don't teach about racism, they automatically eliminate any discussion of anti-racism."
An excerpt from Keeping the Promise?: The Debate Over Charter SchoolsBy Leigh Dingerson "Any discussion of charter schools must ask not only whether charters promote a worthwhile vision of public education, but also whether they are faithful to their own promises."
- Fault Lines in Merit Pay By Sam Coleman "Far from addressing the systemic, institutionalized problems in New York City's public schools, the city's test-based pay program attempts to provide a 'silver bullet' solution by relying on crass material incentives."
- City Teaching; Beyond the Stereotypes By Gregory Michie "For city teachers, it's also about functioning within—and challenging—a system that in many ways works to undercut and even thwart your best efforts."
- Rethinking MySpace By Antero Garcia "As an educator constantly searching for ways to use popular culture in my classroom, I decided to make MySpace part of my teaching repertoire."
- Childhood Is Dying By Dahr Jamail, Ahmed Ali "Iraq's children have been more gravely affected by the U.S. occupation than any other segment of the population."
- Empire or Humanity By Howard Zinn "The American Empire has always been a bipartisan project—Democrats and Republicans have taken turns extending it, extolling it, justifying it."
- Putting a Human Face on the Immigration Debate By Steven Picht-Trujillo, Paola Ledezma "For those of us working with immigrant populations, we have in our students living examples that we can use to bring the immigration issue to the forefront and teach all of our students."
- An Open Letter to the Hispanic Scholarship Fund from the Association of Raza Educators The Association of Raza Educators implores you: open your scholarships to all students of Hispanic descent regardless of citizenship.
- Everything Flowers By Lisa Espinosa "I noted the biased curriculum... the absence of lessons on the Chicano movement or other aspects of my history and culture, the various attempts to make me less Mexican and more white."
- Pump Up the Blowouts By Gilda L. Ochoa "This year is the 40th anniversary of the Chicana/o School Blowouts, and I wonder how schools, communities, and the media will mark this important movement."
- Free Review: Our Dignity Can Defeat Anyone By Julie Treick O'Neill By Julie Treick O'Neill A review of the film Maquilapolis [City of Factories]
- Letters to the Editors
- Short Stuff
- Kids in the Middle
Rethinking Bilingual Education is an exciting new collection of articles about bringing students’ home languages into our classrooms.
For almost two decades, teachers have looked to Reading, Writing, and Rising Up as a trusted text to integrate social justice teaching in language arts classrooms.
Teaching is a lifelong challenge, but the first few years in the classroom are typically a teacher’s hardest.