This post was written by Contributing Author Sonia Adams, a PhD candidate at St. John’s University who organized an event in TLH’s Spring 2021 series on active learning.
Toni Cade Bambara has greatly impacted my work as an educator and curriculum developer. I admire her commitment to literacy education, creativity, multiculturalism, and social justice. During my undergraduate studies in English, I was fortunate to take literature classes and seminars that exposed me to writers of color from the United States and abroad. However, I noticed a trajectory within many of the required, standardized, and special topic English courses, which privileged White male authors and texts. The western literary canon perpetuates an aesthetic that Bambara referred to as the “Anglo-Saxon tradition” that limited entryway for women and ethnic writers to enter the English curriculum (Bambara, “Summer 1968 SEEK Report). Although there were some gains made in late 1960s and early 1970s in making the curriculum more inclusive, there were some women and ethnic authors who served as ‘minority representatives. In other words, their writings were deemed the standard for the racial, gender, and/or cultural group which they derived from. Bambara foresaw the implications of white patriarchal privileging and minority representation and sought to challenge them as an English Professor, writer, editor, and activist. Continue reading
At the Philosophy for Children Workshop on Thursday, April 22, Prof. Cheri Carr (LaGuardia Community College) with her students Jesus Benitez and David Ortiz, talked about how inclusive thinking begins with how we treat our children. Between ages 2-5, children internalize racial bias and display attitudes similar to adults. By age 12, many children become set in their beliefs. Caring and invested educators and parents can unintentionally perpetuate anti-Black racism by promoting a colorblind approach to race stemming from their discomfort navigating conversations on race. Not talking about race reinforces racism in young children; talking about it encourages the development of positive attitudes and skills needed to advocate for racial justice. Continue reading
This post was written by Contributing Authors Heather Huggins and Aviva Geismar, collaborating professors at Queensborough Community College.
peace-building through awareness and improvisation
Friday, March 12, 2021 at 10:30 am
Our program was a celebration of a participatory action research methodology known as Social Presencing Theater, a body-based approach for sensing and enacting change. It was also an invitation to engage with QCC’s student and alumni practice group, which began in April 2018.
Social Presencing Theater (SPT) decolonizes learning by reclaiming the body as an equitable way of knowing and being. SPT centers first-person experience via an improvisational and cyclical process, inviting participants to perceive a larger present. Because SPT is practiced in community, it positions our relational spaces, and the distinct cultures that emerge from them, as worthy of reflection and development. The “theater” in SPT refers to a shared place where something of significance is made visible. Continue reading
This post was written by Contributing Author Mariama Khan, an adjunct lecturer at Lehman College.
On March 23, 2021, I participated in the “Transformative Learning in the Humanities” workshop on “Teaching Africana Women’s Responses to the Covid-19 Crisis,” under the theme “Ubuntu Pedagogy in Pandemic Times.” The workshop was chaired by Professor Bertrade Ngo-Ngijol-Banoum, chair, Africana Studies Department, Lehman College. Her discussion on the Ubuntu Pedagogy framework was followed by my presentation on dome-ndeye and badenya, Wollof and Mandinka concepts on interpersonal and communal solidarity. The two concepts were useful to how I personally responded to the Covid-19 pandemic. Some Lehman College students also made presentations during the workshop. Continue reading
This post was written by Contributing Author S. Lenise Wallace, a motivational speaker, communication professional and college professor teaching communication courses at CUNY.
Where is “home”? Literally and figuratively? This was a theme that arose from the screening of the documentary Latinegras: The Journey of Self-Love through an Afro Latina Lens directed by Omilani Alarcon. The film screening and panel discussion that followed was moderated by Dr. Sonia Rodriguez and panelists were filmmaker Omilani Alarcon and CUNY professors Drs. Ryan Mann-Hamilton and S. Lenise Wallace. Continue reading
This post was written by Contributing Author Madeline Ruggiero, Assistant Professor at Queensborough Community College.
This workshop takes a granular look at a portion of a book chapter written by the speaker Madeline Rugiero entitled, “Untold Stories: An Introduction to Primary Sources,” to be released later this year in the book, The Community College Library Reference and Instruction, . This session focuses on a student centered assignment created to motivate and engage students to be active learners. Students are asked to locate and analyze family primary sources such as a document, letter, artifact, photo, or oral history/ interview. Continue reading
This post was written by Contributing Author Alyse Keller, facilitator of the “Performance as Narrative Medicine” workshop held on March 19, 2021.
For this Performance as Narrative Medicine Workshop participants are led through an active and participatory performance workshop. Narrative medicine, as conceived by Rita Charon at Columbia University, is a theory and practice that emerged as a way to teach physicians and medical professionals, “to practice with empathy, trustworthiness, and sensitivity toward individual patients.” Over time, narrative medicine has evolved in order to bring the “powerful narrative skills of radical listening and creativity from the humanities and the arts to address the needs of all who seek and deliver healthcare.” Merging the central tenets of narrative medicine with the fundamental principles of performance, this workshop allows participants to share, reflect, and heal through the creation and presentation of personal performances of health and illness—specifically as they relate to their experiences with Coronavirus Continue reading
This post was written by Contributing Authors Quilan Arnold and Jessica Nicoll, facilitators of the “Conditions for Change: A Pedagogical Cypher” workshop held on March 24, 2021.
“Conditions for Change: A Pedagogical Cypher,” an interactive workshop, engaged faculty and students in structures that support trusting socially just classrooms. As Cathy Davidson writes, “You cannot counter structural inequality with good will. You have to structure equality.” One structure Conditions for Change used is an Africanist socio-political tool: the cypher or bantaba. Embracing the philosophy of the circle – see all and welcome being seen by all – showcases possibilities for non-hierarchical learning systems within academic spaces. Other workshop structures called upon experiences with Bohmian Dialogue Circles, Onye Ozuzu’s Technology of the Circle and Lois Weaver’s Long Table. Continue reading
Speculative Futures: Creating Better Worlds in the Classroom
Tuesday, April 6 @ 1 – 3 PM | Marcelo D. Viana Neto (Hostos Community College)
Learn more and register here (opens in new window)
This post was written by Contributing Authors Midori Yamamura and Tommy Mintz and edited by Jason Leggett.
“That was the best of all the webinars and whatever I’ve been clocking into!”
“This was a very powerful conversation on the topic of homelessness. The biggest takeaway for me is to hear this topic approached from grassroots and not top-down perspective.”
These reactions came from participants of UnHomeless NYC: an information session. This two-day workshop examined homelessness with artists, community activists, students, educators, and attendees in dialogue around activities leading up to a public exhibition in the fall of 2021 and spring of 2022 at Kingsborough Community College. Together, educators across disciplines along with students, activists and artists are transforming educational spaces to critically reflect about perceptions of homelessness as agency for social change. As one activist, Manon Vergerio, reflected after the event, the voices from the street can be a powerful pedagogical tool that triggers us to see things differently, not just scholars writing for other scholars. Continue reading