2008. Mar. 24.
04: 05 PM
After James Mitchell's
brief introduction of today's presenters and topics, Jason Ritter and Kyunghwa Lee start their presentation: Explicit Goals, Implicit Values, and the Unintentional Stifling of Pluralism in Social Studies Teacher Education. I am afraid that I cannot give you more details of this presentation at this time. Honestly, I am still on my way from Sheraton Tower Hotel to the Marriott Marquis Time Square Hotel with other AERA attendees who have interested sessions located in two distant buildings.
Finally, I am here. Professor Mitchell, the chair, reminds Professor Ritter that he has one minute left for the presentation, and he decides to end his presentation there.
Anand Marri starts to present his working paper, “Exploring Urban High School Students' Understandings of and Experiences With Classroom-Based Multicultural Democratic Education”. He introduces the theoretical framework, Classroom-Based Multicultural Democratic Education (CMDE), which emphasizes critical pedagogy, skills for democratic living, building of community (he points out the grouping patterns in lunchroom reminds us more efforts needed to build a multicultural community in school) and thorough disciplinary content.
Professor Marri then introduces the demographics of these four middle/high urban schools and presents the findings based on primary analysis of pre/post survey of 120 students in the study. Several themes are presented, such as:
- Students' understanding of history: many students indicate Franklin D. Roosevelt as the greatest American hero due to his contribution to help the country out of Great Depression. Students also report their understanding of constitution and how government works.
- Students who believe they can make a difference in the way their school is run are also more interested in current events.
- Four teachers indicate they have classroom discussions weekly, but only 67% of the students in the survey remember such practice.
- Issue of racism and injustice: 78% of the survey participants indicate that their class doesn't emphasize on issues of racism and other forms of injustice
Professor Marri reminds audience that these working themes still need further support from other qualitative data analysis.
16: 40 PM
encounters a technical problem, and won't use projector for her presentation. She starts to read her paper, “Impotence or Emancipation? A Critical Assessment of Cosmopolitan Citizenship”. Her focus in this paper is to assess how cosmopolitism contributes to citizenship education discourse, and to evaluate the extent it shape critical democratic educators' approaches to citizenship education. She points out that cosmopolitism poses an ethical alternative to nationalism and reveals the limitations of existing conception of citizenship, and “challenges educator to recognize a greater diversity of human identities and human needs”. However, imprecise usage of cosmopolitanism, failing to theorize the relationship between cultural cosmopolitanism and political economy, and failing to address the relationship/bridge between national and global citizenship limit its contribution to educational practice.
I realize that I am too used to a presentation with Powerpoint, and it is not easy to concentrate on this presentation all the time.
Louis Ganzler, a doctoral student at University of Wisconsin, begins his presentation, Simulations and Democratic Education: A Case Study. He first shows recent national statistical results of youth political engagement, and argues the need to increase youth political engagement. Ganzler points out that controversial issue discussion increases student's interest in politics but is rarely practiced in school. He suggests that simulation can be an effective pedagogical tool, and thus focus his study on how political simulation can affect students' political engagement. Qualitative data from three high school U.S. Government course using legislative simulation are analyzed.
Students participated in legislative simulation with eight stages: reflect their own values, declare position on political spectrum, declare party membership, form committee to study issues, elect party leader, write bill, hold hearings on the bill, and debate the bills. The findings show that political simulation, which exposes students to controversial issue discussion (such as immigration bill), increases students' political engagement, which is evident in student's reflections such as “on volleyball game bus last week we talking about the immigration bills”.
Finally, William Timpson presents “Belfast, Northern Ireland: Caught in the Crossfire Stories of Reconciliation”. He first provides rationale for studying citizenship in Northern Ireland: the “cultural trauma” experienced here from 1972 to 1992 would equate to ten 9/11 attacks each year for twenty years, (I don't really understand how this is calculated) “yet the 1998 Peace Accord is holding”. He then shows a series of photos and asks how to practice democratic education within a social context with heavy violence and conflicts in daily life. He answers this question by sharing some successful cases of people who were survivors of assassination become advocates of peace education in the area.
An audience member responds to the last presentation and points out new comers (immigrants) change the dynamics of conflicts in some of these areas. Besides, some people are interested in political simulation and ask details of the class climate and tensions/conflicts in the case studies.
End of this session.