When it became clear that masks and online education would be a part of fall teaching this year, I know many of us in academia (and education more broadly) discussed potential challenges for accessibility when teaching with a mask. But as an academic librarian who is childless, I didn’t think about the broader potential impacts of mask wearing, or online learning, on children trying to learn early literacy skills.
We teach students to consider multiple points of view on topics in order to appreciate and understand diverse viewpoints, but what happens when there can’t be another point of view because the topic is false information?
Parent complaints over teachers’ use of CNN 10 reveals the trouble with teaching critical thinking skills.
The 2020 Presidential election, the COVID-19 pandemic, and an increase in digital, remote learning reveal the importance of providing students with nuanced, varied learning opportunities related to misinformation.
Abortion rights is a topic that some teachers may choose to avoid or be prohibited from teaching. Karen Blumenthal’s latest book, “Jane Against the World,” provides students with a well-researched and nuanced history of reproductive rights in America, connecting to larger issues of poverty, racism, and gender and workplace discrimination. Learn more about the censorship she experienced while researching Texas state documents as well as experiences with censorship related to her books.
The ongoing struggle to ensure racial justice in American society should prompt educators to take a closer look at the wording of history standards and the learning resources used by students. Then, collaborate with school librarians to provide students with a more accurate, complex look at history and current events.
Like all readers, teachers and librarians develop intimate relationships with books, so it shouldn’t be surprising that the books teachers and librarians choose to offer our students are intimately tied with who we are, what we care about, and what is happening in our lives at any given historical moment.
Eight of the Top Ten Most Challenged Books in 2019 featured diverse content related to sexuality. Read an interview with Jed Dearybuy, educator and LGBTQ+ advocate in South Carolina, who is working to build more accepting, equitable, and safe educational environments for all students.
Some public challenges in 2019 focused on books that were read aloud to minors. The issues were LGBTQIA and race. But some challenges raise new questions.
As the popularity of classroom libraries grows, so do book challenges and censorship. Classroom teachers must partner with school librarians in order to protect students’ right to read and diverse classroom libraries.