BiographyDr. Lisa S. Goldstein began her primary grade teaching career in Brooklyn, New York in 1988. She moved to California in 1989 and taught second grade in the Palo Alto Unified school district. After several years, Lisa left her primary grade classroom to pursue a doctoral degree, with the intention of becoming an early childhood teacher educator.
Lisa's first academic position was at the University of Texas at Austin, where she taught undergraduates who were just beginning the first semester their 3-semester clinical practicum sequence. These prospective teachers were required to do observations and practice teaching in public school prekindergarten or kindergarten classrooms.
Lisa's research examines and interprets the processes by which primary grade teachers make curricular and instructional decisions. Using this research to inform her teaching, Lisa continually emphasized the need for her students—and for all early childhood teachers—to take responsibility for making deliberate, intentional decisions about what they would teach their students and how they would teach it. Lisa's students also became familiar with the necessity of using developmentally appropriate practices with learners in prekindergarten and kindergarten.
Lisa often said, "Of course you can plan lessons that use seatwork and worksheets to teach academic knowledge and skills. But if you actually want your young students to learn the content you're trying to teach them, make sure you use developmentally appropriate practices." Lisa must have been doing something right, because she was honored with the 2004 Dean's Distinguished Teaching Award and the 2005 Libba Shatto Massey Award for Excellence in Teacher Education."
In 2008, after twelve years on the faculty of the University of Texas at Austin, Lisa joined Santa Clara University's Department of Education. She currently teaches courses that include curriculum, standards, instruction, assessment and accountability, diversity, and ethical teaching practices to the prospective TK-12 teachers in Santa Clara University’s Master of Arts in Teaching + Teaching Credential (MATTC) program.
Lisa earned a Bachelor’s degree in Art History from Yale University, a Master’s degree in Education of the Gifted from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Teacher Education from Stanford University. An internationally recognized expert on primary grade teachers’ curricular and instructional decision-making, Lisa has authored 3 books and over 30 journal articles that present her research findings. Lisa currently lives in San Jose, California with George, her elderly English bulldog.
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
Early childhood education
Developmentally appropriate practices in primary grade classrooms
Primary grade teachers' curricular and instructional decision making
Role of caring teacher-student relationships in students' cognitive/academic development
Watching Shakespeare performances
Consuming popular culture (Star Wars, vinyl records, visual/mixed media arts, internet humor)