Since working closely with Dr. Nicole Sieben as a research participant, focused on Writing Hope, I have applied similar theory to the practice of teaching reading among adolescents.

This page will feature my work with struggling readers in secondary classrooms; with self-directed learners in a K-12 democratic free school setting; and with adolescent tutees. I expect it to include partnerships with other educators, and to contribute to the growing body of practical experience related to critical educators, social justice pedagogy, critical literacy, and Catholic-Christian education.

The page and my blog represent the constant tension between the classics (Socrates/Dickens) and contemporary studies (Sara Zarr novels/critical education pedagogies). The following resources connect me with educators whose ongoing inquiry invites young learners to become curious, wise, and creative.


To read more about Nicole Sieben’s work Writing Hope Works

Preview the first two chapters here. Writing Hope explores how Will + Ways = Agency.


To learn more about critical literacy pedagogy see Joseph Rodríguez’s book:

Joseph demonstrates how young writers forge links between their personal heritage, traditional curricula, and their social worlds. His NEH Borderlands Narratives website, featuring the work of 25 summer scholars, including yours truly, is full of accessible lesson plans you can use today to inspire your learners.


Other useful readings:

Talbot Theological Seminary web page on Thomas Groome, who bridges liberation education and Christian praxis.

The Relevance of Homer and the liberal arts in today’s education, on Angelicum website. James Taylor has designed an experiential way to enter the humanities and great books.

The Dickens Project features Dorritlab and Middlelab, experiential ways of inviting teens into Victorian spaces and texts. They also run seminars for secondary teachers and host scholarly “camp” with dance, book discussions, teas.

Middlemarch: The Series is an updated version of the George Eliot (Marian Evans) novel about life in a Victorian village, translated to a 21st C. university. It invites viewers to engage with Evans’s ideas about humanity that transcend Victorian norms of gender and ethnicity. YouTube video series

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RSS Good Questions

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