Find your fierce.
Teaching Fiercely: Spreading Joy and Justice in Our Schools offers educators important, practical antidotes to remedy injustices experienced by kids, teachers, and families in schools everywhere, every day, all the time. It also offers a treatment plan immersed in care and community, and poses that connectedness as a sustainable way to move forward.
“What a grounding and energizing reminder of the power, hope, and everyday joy of our world-changing profession. When the weight of teaching feels heaviest to bear, pick up this book.”
“When I think about educators who are out there doing ‘the work,’ one of the first people who comes to mind is Kass Minor. In her debut book, Kass leads from her years of experience working in New York City schools, and always from a place of loving accountability. This is a must read for any educator and person who strives to center community in their field.”
“Educators seeking a relevant, accessible playbook to center joy and counter injustice in schools should approach this book with a curiosity like it was written. Kass animates possibilities that have not yet been imagined or realized in this rhythmic compilation of curated practices for a truly fierce commitment to serving children.”
What is the pedagogy of justice? How is joy implicated in that pursuit?
What does it mean to teach with our whole selves, fiercely?
This book is more than doing; it is a treatment plan for unjust practices.
- The importance of reflective practice.
- Historically and culturally responsive teaching.
- Theoretical foundations of teaching and learning.
- Examination of the self in connection to community to cultivate real and sustainable transformative teaching practices that center humanity, particularly for the learners we teach.
The Nature of a Curriculum-Making Journey.
Curriculum-making and developing classroom life is expansive work. Those who spend the most time with students are in the best position to make decisions about their learning life, alongside research and community support.
Herein lies the just nature of a curriculum-making journey, a primary component of an educator’s justice work:
- We do the inner work of understanding who we are, where we’ve been, and what it is we’re trying to do. In other words, we develop a more powerfully reflective practice.
- We prepare ourselves by doing the study and practice piece of teacher preparation that helps us understand how to teach; developing a strong base of knowledge that underscores brain-based learning, culturally responsive pedagogy, and developmentally appropriate foundational literacy and numeracy skills.
- We work to deeply understand the communities in which we work; that is who we are teaching and what we are teaching.
- We care for ourselves, and we care for our community.
The Nexus of Joy and Justice.
The resistance lies in educators’ ability to locate, experience, and sustain joy for themselves and their community. It also lies in their ability to identify and unpack both justice and injustice.
Justice is multi-faceted. Part of our justice work is positioning youth, teachers, and families as co-creators of the school experience alongside policy-makers, researchers, principals, and superintendents. Agency comes from trust, expertise, and collective work toward justice and joy.