Start Where You Are, But Don’t Stay There
Understanding Diversity, Opportunity Gaps, and Teaching in Today’s Classrooms
H. Richard Milner IV, foreword by Gloria Ladson-Billings
cloth, 256 Pages
Pub. Date: November 2010
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paper, 256 Pages
Pub. Date: November 2010
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2012 Outstanding Book Award, AACTE
Start Where You Are, But Don’t Stay There addresses a crucial issue in teacher training and professional education: the need to prepare pre-service and in-service teachers for the racially diverse student populations in their classrooms. A down-to-earth book, it aims to help practitioners develop insights and skills for successfully educating diverse student bodies.
The book centers on case studies that exemplify the challenges, pitfalls, and opportunities facing teachers in diverse classrooms. These case studies—of white and African American teachers working (and preparing to work) in urban and suburban settings—are presented amid more general discussions about race and teaching in contemporary schools. Informing these discussions and the cases themselves is their persistent attention to opportunity gaps that need to be fully grasped by teachers who aim to understand and promote the success of students of greatly varying backgrounds.
Start Where You Are, But Don’t Stay There arises out of recent scholarship about race and education, but it is more directly inspired by the pressing need for useful and credible guidance for professional educators in diverse classrooms. It will prove indispensable to teachers, administrators, and scholars alike.
This is a wonderful text that should be required reading for teacher education programs. Based on literature, best practices, and syntheses of learning sciences and social realities, the book debunks myths held by even the most open-minded and well-intentioned people in our society. It provides immensely helpful examples of strategies for reducing opportunity gaps for disadvantaged children, so that they too can reach—and exceed—their goals.
— Lee E. Limbird, Dean, School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics, and Business, Fisk University
If you thought excellent teaching is based on instinct rather than learning, think again. Start Where You Are, But Don’t Stay There offers wonderfully vivid case studies of practicing teachers who have learned to succeed teaching students who come from backgrounds dissimilar from—and sometimes similar to—their own. In this significant and uplifting book, Milner shares his optimism and his wisdom about teachers’ potential to become border-crossers who can reach all of their students by first reaching into themselves.
— Christine Sleeter, professor emerita, California State University, Monterey Bay, and president, National Association for Multicultural Education
This engaging and informative book is enriched by compelling examples of teachers in the process of becoming adept at their craft. Milner provides educators with the knowledge, insights, and inspiration that will help them to create schools in which all students have equal opportunities to learn.
— James A. Banks, Kerry and Linda Killinger Endowed Chair in Diversity Studies and founding director, Center for Multicultural Education, University of Washington, Seattle
A thoughtful and insightful analysis of what it takes to educate all children, especially those who have traditionally been poorly served by our nation’s schools. The ideas and recommendations presented in this book will serve as useful guides to educators, policy makers, and others who are seeking ways to create successful schools.
— Pedro Noguera, Peter L. Agnew Professor of Education, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University
The stories Milner tells about instructional competence, caring, and facilitation are compelling examples of culturally responsive teaching in action and effect. They show that educational excellence is truly possible for children of color in U. S. schools.
— Geneva Gay, professor of curriculum and instruction, University of Washington
This book is a must-read for educators at all levels. It showcases teachers and students improving together and doing what it takes to succeed. We will use this book as a resource for turning around our school!
— Perry L. Daniel, principal, Prescott Middle School, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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