1st Edition

Connecting Theory and Practice in Middle School Literacy Critical Conversations

Edited By Jason DeHart, Carla K. Meyer, Katie Walker Copyright 2022
    226 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    226 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Bringing together the voices of researchers and teachers, this volume addresses how teachers connect theory to practice in the middle school English Language Arts education setting and explores how to teach and engage with young adults in a way that treats them as ethical and thoughtful citizens. The book bridges the gap between educational theory and real-world implementation and covers a range of timely topics in middle level education through a focus on text choice, identity, and practice. Contributors acknowledge and balance the challenges associated with the reality of teaching, including time constraints, sudden shifts, and fast-paced work, with real-world guidance on key topics, such as supporting multilingual students, queering middle grade pedagogies, teaching diverse texts, examining racial bias in the classroom, and critical digital literacy.

    Ideal for courses on middle level education and literacy education, this book encourages and equips pre-service teachers to engage in meaningful conversations with their students that foster reflection and transformative learning.

    Introduction and Background from the Editors

    Section 1: Troubling Notions of TextChapter 1. Critical Digital Literacy by Dani Kachorsky, Alexandria Perez, and John Hill Chapter 2. Student Voice is Power: Incorporating Critical Witness and Testimony in Middle School Classrooms by Rachelle Savitz and Daniel Stockwell

    Chapter 3. Exploring What Counts as Text: The Possibilities of Picture Books and Graphica with Early Adolescents by Stephanie Reid    Section 2: Troubling Notions of Situating Practice

    Chapter 4. A Call to Action: Setting the Stage for Equity in the Classroom by Kim O’Donnell

    Chapter 5. Dialogue as Disruption: The Power of Middle Grades Classroom Talk by Amanda Rigell and Arianna Banack

    Chapter 6. Literacy for the Middle Grades: Its Antecedent Necessities, Subsequent Needs, and Future Aspirations by Mary Roe

    Section 3: Troubling Notions of Student and Teacher Identity Chapter 7. I am the Body Beautiful: Disidentification and the Queering of the Young Adolescent by Matthew Thomas-Reid

    Chapter 8. Multilingualism in Middle School Education by Katie Walker

    Chapter 9. What Do We Believe about Middle Grades Literacy and Race? Interrogating Practices and Pedagogies of Middle Grades Literacy Education through the Lens of Critical Race Theory by Kristie White Smith

    Chapter 10. Dis-Orienting Pedagogy: Teaching Critical Engagement with Orientalism and Islamophobia by Fatima van Hattum

    Concluding Section

    Chapter 11. Remaining Reflective by Jason D. DeHart


    Jason DeHart is Assistant Professor of Reading Education and Special Education at Appalachian State University, USA.

    Carla K. Meyer is Associate Professor of Literacy Education at Duquesne University, USA.

    Katie Walker is Assistant Professor of Literacy, Language, and Culture at the University of Southern Maine, USA.