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Trauma, Loss, and Literacies
For this issue of Language Arts, we seek manuscripts exploring how traumatic events and experiences are storied within spaces of teaching and learning. What happens when children share or read stories of loss, economic hardship, and/or trauma? How are students drawing on multiple modalities to express these stories or their responses to them? What responsibilities do educators have to those who share trauma narratives and to those who witness the narratives? How do collective experiences of traumatic events (e.g., police shootings, environmental disasters) find expression in the language arts classroom? What happens when these stories are silenced? How do educational institutions, assessment practices, and curricula serve as sites of struggle and loss for students?
In this issue, we also invite authors to write about how the language arts can serve as sites of possibility and hope for students experiencing trauma and loss. Submission deadline: May 15, 2016
For this issue, we are interested in exploring the reading, writing, teaching, and performing of poetry. Recently, nonfiction has received increased attention, largely due to the implementation of the Common Core State Standards, but poetry, often a neglected genre, deserves attention as well. Poetry has the potential to awaken the senses, sharpen language skills, and inspire political activism.
Questions to pose related to poetry include: Which pedagogical practices successfully engage children in reading and responding to poetry in meaningful ways and across the content areas? How can poetry titles be utilized to support children in writing poetry themselves? How have poetry books evolved over time? For instance, a number of recently published books by Joyce Sidman and Douglas Florian include nonfiction information along with the poems. What might content analyses of poetry books by poets such as Janet Wong, Pat Mora, Marilyn Nelson, and others (e.g., past recipients of the NCTE Excellence in Poetry for Children Award) uncover? What are children’s poetry preferences and how are they shaped by the books teachers select, read aloud, and make available? How are young poets finding expression and reaching audiences with digital tools, multimedia platforms, and spoken word events? How do young people orchestrate multiple modalities when crafting and performing poems?
Submission deadline: July 15, 2016
Advocacy for the Language Arts
For this issue we expand on the NCTE 2016 Convention theme and invite manuscripts that explore how language arts educators engage in advocacy. We want to know to whom and for what do you advocate? We are interested in efforts that help educators deepen their commitments and remain hopeful within the literacy field. How do readers of Language Arts, for example, come together, take ethical positions, defend their profession, care for students, and create possibility in their work? Do you assume roles as teacher-leaders to effect change or participate in collaborative learning and inquiry networks to nourish and sustain your professional lives? How does leadership for language arts curricula and pedagogy occur within the confines of political, bureaucratic, or community expectations? Who stands up for learners susceptible to low literacy achievement such as those with disabilities, immigrant youth, African American boys, or children living in poverty? What types of classroom, school, district, university, nonprofit, or community-based initiatives or pathways (big or small) provide support for advocates of improved literacy teaching and learning? These are the types of questions we are hoping to explore. Submission deadline: September 15, 2016
Viewpoints and Visions
For this unthemed issue, we invite Feature Article and Perspectives on Practice submissions that offer a variety of viewpoints and visions related to language arts across multiple settings and modalities. What topics, concerns, or issues do you think are important to today’s readers of Language Arts? What kinds of theoretical lenses have you applied to your inquiry work to increase our collective understandings of language arts instruction? How does your research illustrate the range of ways in which young people are engaged with the language arts? What trends do you see in the field of language arts? What innovative literacy practices do you see in the diverse spaces of classrooms and community settings? Within a digital age, how are our understandings of children’s literature, writing instruction, and literacy learning shifting? These are just a few of the many questions that can be explored in this issue. Join us in crafting an assortment of articles that helps to expand our viewpoints and visions about language arts. Submission deadline: November 15, 2016
It's Primary: Literacy Learning in the Early Years
Educators often shoulder immense pressure from numerous forces in regard to supporting young children’s early literacy learning (PreK through grade 3). Parents, politicians, and other stakeholders recognize the importance of the early grades in laying a solid literacy foundation for later success in schooling and life. In this issue we invite articles that focus on innovative language arts practices taking place in early childhood settings in and out of school. Some of the many questions that can be explored in this issue are: How can out-of-school settings like museums, libraries, and community centers support language arts learning for young children? What types of children’s literature (e.g., wordless, alphabet, transitional chapter books, nonfiction) best support early literacy development? How are children being encouraged to explore the craft of picturebook authors and illustrators—such as Laura Vaccaro Seeger, Donald Crews, Wong Herbert Yee, and Yuyi Morales—whose work is aimed at young readers? How are technological advances and social media impacting and reshaping language arts instruction for young children? For instance, how might preschoolers or kindergarteners use iPads or various apps to read and compose? How are long-held literacy practices such as reading aloud, shared reading, and word study (and even assessment of these practices) evolving in our digital age? How can families and educators collaborate to support young children’s growth in the language arts? Join us in putting together a collection of articles about young children and language arts learning that will push and challenge our thinking. Submission deadline: January 15, 2017
Reimagining Writers and Writing
In this issue, we seek Feature Article and Perspectives on Practice submissions that provide vivid portraits of young people writing. How are young people charting new territory and reaching new audiences as writers, multimodal composers, and bricoleurs, seeking inspiration from the world around them, and drawing on all the tools, modes, and platforms at their disposal? We also seek insights into the teaching of writing. What do we know about promising instructional strategies that promote critical, creative, argumentative, and analytical writing? Within this rapidly evolving landscape of digital writing, we also recognize seismic shifts in how we define, experience, and research writing. How do new technologies, social media, and multimedia platforms shape how young people participate in writing events? How are definitions of writing workshop, the writing process, and writing assessment shifting in response to these new practices and understandings? Please join us in crafting an issue that expands our understandings and helps us reimagine writers and writing. Submission deadline: March 15, 2017