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Talking Points, Vol. 10, No. 2, May 1999

Cover Art for Talking Points, Vol. 10, No. 2, April/May 1999

Table of Contents

Issue Theme: Change

  • In the Meantime

    Kenneth S. Goodman

    Abstract: The political campaign to control literacy education on national, state, and local levels has reached an uglier, meaner stage.

    Keywords: Literacy, Elementary, School-Community Relation

  • Have You Tried . . .

    Susan Ammon Young

    Abstract: The observation that my students’ learning was enhanced when they were members of a learning “community” led to an inquiry on the topic to improve my own teaching. My purpose became twofold: to investigate strategies that effective teachers use to establish classroom community and to provide an opportunity for teachers’ voices to be heard.

    Keywords: Pedagogy, Research, Elementary

  • "Balanced Educator"

    Mary Ann Nickel

    Abstract: How do you respond to the label “balanced educator”? What difference do you see the call for “balance” making in teacher preparation?

    Keywords: Pedagogy, Elementary

  • Moving toward Inclusive Education: Two Stories

    Karen M. Feathers, Michael Peterson, and Kim Beloin

    Abstract: Describes two schools that were moved into inclusive practices. Notes that in the first school, about half of the teachers considered themselves whole language teachers prior to the inclusion project, while in the second school, both whole language and inclusion were new to the teachers. Discusses the features of change in these schools.

    Keywords: Diversity, Literacy, Standards, Elementary

  • I'm not a communist, a liberal, or a whole language teacher (and I don't beat my wife)

    Curt Dudley-Marling

    Abstract: Discusses the label of "whole language teacher" and expresses that the author's concern about being named one is based on his sense that names matter; he worries about who is doing the naming and for what purpose. Concludes that whole language is needed as a way of creating community to support all those language teachers who "teach against the grain."

    Keywords: Literacy, Elementary, Professional Development

  • Looking Long and Wide in Nebraska: Facing the Queer Within

    Rick Meyer

    Abstract: Describes one teacher's unhappiness with the teaching situation because of the school district's recent adoption of a systematic intense phonics instruction program that every K-3 teacher is required to use with every child via whole group instruction. Argues for the importance of whole language instruction.

    Keywords: Literacy, Pedagogy, Elementary, Professional Development

  • Making Change

    Amy Wagner

    Abstract: Describes the author's experience making a transition from teaching English to high schoolers in Missouri to teaching math, science, reading, and writing to Native American third graders. Notes that all students still share similar questions, frustrations, and excitement and she still gives support, guidance, and encouragement. Concludes that students everywhere need someone to believe in them.

    Keywords: Elementary, Professional Development

  • Anna ends the reading wars: A call to lower the legal reading age

    Dan Wuori

    Abstract: The author's experience as a kindergarten teacher with students who have had a wide range of literacy within the home helps him reflect on parents "misuse" of the "Hooked on Phonics" program and their children’s lack of benefit from it. He proposes that educators lower "the legal reading age" to provide all children—even the youngest ones—with literate lives and wonderful stories.

    Keywords: Language, Literacy, Pedagogy, Writing, Reading, Elementary

  • Helping Laura to Help Me

    Marisa Boan

    Abstract: Describes the author's experience with Laura, the younger sister of one of her fifth-grade students from the previous year. Notes her preconceived notions concerning Laura's academic potential. Realizes that she was setting expectations for her students without providing the information her students needed to achieve them. Concludes that Laura had slowed her down and helped her reflect on her practice.

    Keywords: Pedagogy, Elementary, Middle

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