Stories from the Heart is for, by, and about prospective and practicing teachers understanding themselves as curious and literate beings, making connections with colleagues, and researching their own literacy and the literacy lives of their students. It demonstrates the power and importance of story in our own lives as literate individuals. Readers are encouraged to: tell, write, or re-create the stories of their literacy lives in order to understand how they learn and teach; begin the journey into writing the stories of others' literacy lives; find support in their researching endeavors; and examine the idea of framing stories by using the work of other teachers and researchers.
"This book is an invitation to linger on the front porch on a summer evening, sipping some iced tea, with your close friend who is also a teacher. While there you tell a few stories, listen to a few stories, laugh and cry. You really don't want to leave, even when the book is over….The holistic, child-centered theory, research and pedagogy behind this text is sound and the book is perfectly aligned with this theory and practice. This book will push our thinking ahead as teachers….and will provide a book for instructors creating a whole language community of learners in their college classrooms."
Illinois State University
"This book is so captivating that I savored every word. It is well written, funny, insightful….scholarly and yet not intimidating to readers….The pedagogical effectiveness is powerful. Readers will want to begin immediately writing their own classroom stories….I believe this book will become a classic and will have value for many years."
—Mary Ann Manning
University of Alabama
"The focus is on teachers who think carefully and thoughtfully about their classrooms rather than being technicians who implement someone else's program….We all tell stories in everyday conversations and so the invitation to think about and tell stories to make sense of our lives as learners and teachers is not intimidating….I loved the story frame of the whole book. I think that this book is very strong conceptually and in writing style."
—Kathy G. Short
University of Arizona
"The use of narratives to help us become reflective practitioners is a very powerful method, grounded in solid theory and research. I was especially impressed with the author's use of basic research in language and literacy (primary sources) to support observations and experiences. This…makes the proposed text unique among similar books, which tell stories or case studies but leave it all up to the reader to figure out how theory has its roots in practice. The author's use of theory and research is absolutely current and consistent with cutting edge thinking about the role of stories in our professional and personal lives."
Kansas State University
Contents: Preface. Our Own Stories. Short Stories. Longer Stories. Support Systems: Forums for Stories and Thinking. Framing Our Stories. I Liked Reading This Book, But I Still Haven't Written a Thing.