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David C. Berliner: A Hug for Jennifer

10 Apr

“Alec’s brother had been shot and killed by the police the night before– a rarity in the middle class neighborhood the school served. And it happened at home, in front of Alec.”

Diane Ravitch's blog

David C. Berliner, one of our nation’s most honored researchers of education, shared this essay for readers of the blog.

                                             A Hug for Jennifer

          I met Jennifer for the first time at a party. She taught elementary school to mostly white, mostly middle-class kids in a suburb of San Francisco. We chatted about education for a while and she invited me to visit her class. I like visiting classes, in part, because they are always so difficult to understand. It is an enormous intellectual challenge to witness and make sense of the interaction of teachers and students with curriculum materials in a classroom setting. Sometimes, with teachers you come to admire, it is like trying to put together a recipe after  tasting  a delicious food. It’s hard to figure out the ingredients that made it so special. 

More frequently, my observations struck me as a bit like trying to study what comes out the end of a…

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Posted by on April 10, 2021 in Uncategorized

 

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