May 2011: Stories of Achievement
In the American ethos, achievement is frequently defined by a Puritan work ethic, rugged individualism, and economic success. This story of achievement is evident in ways we talk about children, schools, and literacy. The myth of this achieving child circulates as one who works hard, pays attention, and complies—behaviors that create the dichotomy between “good” student and “bad” student. Test scores, in turn, both reflect this ethos and reinforce the underlying implied view of achievement that creates disparities in the first place.
For this issue of Language Arts, we invite manuscripts that consider the many different stories of achievement that are a part of our schools today. What are stories of achievement outside of this traditional perspective that we might turn to? What kinds of achievement are happening outside of the norm? What is the trajectory of such success? What preparation do these alternative types of success give for participation in the adult world? What texts support different types of achievement? What types of literacy help us redefine achievement and examine what we’re doing with texts and students in classrooms? What tensions and questions exist around definitions of achievement in schools in comparison to the realities of 21st-century life? Overall, how do we as educators notice achievement in all its forms and cultivate a passion for learning in ourselves and our students? (Submission deadline: January 15, 2010)
July 2011: Inquiries and Insights
In this unthemed issue, our last as editors of Language Arts, we feature your current questions and transformations as educators, community members, students, and researchers. Many directions are possible in this issue. What tensions do you see in literacy education today? What do readers of Language Arts need to notice and think about? What inquiry work have you done that can stretch the field of literacy and language arts? Describe your process of learning about literature, literacy, culture, social justice, and language. What new literacy practices do you see in communities, after-school programs, and classrooms? What supports these practices? What is getting in the way of change? What connections are adults and children making as they engage in the art of language? Join us in creating a collection of inquiries and insights. (Submission deadline: March 15, 2010)