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Reading Between the Lines

Activities for Developing Social Awareness Literacy

Joanne Dowdy and Kenneth Cushner

This book presents the work from a selection of contributors who aim to provide educators with hands-on activities to encourage reflection, awareness, and dialogue related to social justice issues. Highlighting the need for teachers to intentionally create spaces where students from all backgrounds can work together and appreciate their differences, teachers and teacher educators showcase hands-on literacy strategies that all educators can adapt and use in their own classrooms to enhance social justice awareness. « less more »
R&L Education
Pages: 178Size: 6 3/8 x 9 1/2
978-1-4758-0895-7 • Hardback • March 2014 • $64.00 • (£42.95)
978-1-4758-0896-4 • Paperback • March 2014 • $34.00 • (£23.95)
978-1-4758-0897-1 • eBook • March 2014 • $32.00 • (£22.95)
Kenneth Cushner, Ed. D. is Professor of international and intercultural teacher education at Kent State University, author of numerous textbooks, chapter and articles in the fields of multicultural education and intercultural training, and a Founding Fellow and Past President of the International Academy for Intercultural Research. He also serves as director of the Consortium for Overseas Student Teaching (COST).

Joanne Kilgour Dowdy is a Professor of Adolescent/Adult Literacy at Kent State University. The American Educational Research Association Narrative and Research SIG awarded her book, Ph.D. Stories: Conversations with My Sisters, the Outstanding Book Award for 2009.
Introduction-Joanne Kilgour Dowdy

Section 1: Addressing Social Justice through Literacy

Activity #1 Read a Book, Watch a Movie: Exploring the Dynamics of
Social Justice through Literature and Film
Tiffany Powell-Lambright

Activity #2 Using Children’s Literature to Explore Positive Gender Role Models
Michelle J. Sobolak and April A. Mattix

Activity #3 Wearing Your Words: Teaching Language Equity and Appropriateness
Jennifer M. Cunningham

Activity #4 Attitude Check: Students Interpret Texts from Multiple Perspectives
Joanne Kilgour Dowdy

Activity #5 Using Picture Books to Introduce and Extend Student Understanding
of Social Justice
William Bintz

Activity #6 Sing, Dance, Act, Paint or Draw! Active Knowledge through Performance Book Reports
Teresa J. Rishel

Activity #7 Multicultural Literature as a Prompt for Teaching about Social Justice
Claudette Thompson

Activity #8 Can Creative Writing Be Taught?
Mel Glenn

Activity #9 “Pump It Up” Writing Prompt Activity
Joanne Kilgour Dowdy

Activity #10 Sentence Dissection
Andrea Honigsfeld

Activity #11 Teaching Peace Literacy through Literature: A Lesson On Skin
Sandra Golden

Activity #12 Using Reading Logs to Motivate English Language Learners
from Multicultural Backgrounds to Read and Write
Yang Gao

Activity #13 Creating Shared Narratives: Using Language, Conflict and Choice
To Break Down Cross-Cultural Barriers
Gabriel Swarts

Activity #14 Online Autobiographies and Discussions in Global and Multicultural
Teacher Education: A Safe Place to Discuss Culture, Identify, Power, &
Brad Maguth and Misato Yamaguchi

Activity #15 Homegrown Heroes and Local Folks: Transdisciplinary Teaching
Margaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell and Leah Katherine Saal…

Section 2: Addressing Social Justice through Co-Curricular Areas

Activity #16 Widen the Lens: Expanding the Occupational Opportunities
for Students With Disabilities
Patrick J. O’Connor

Activity #17 “Box It”: Resources are Limited: Creativity is Unlimited
Davison Mupinga

Activity #18 Giving Voice to the Moving Body Through Pictures and Drawings
Jennifer L. Fisette

Activity #19 Examining Culturally Relevant Pedagogy Within Physical Education
Takahiro Sato and Jennifer L. Fisette

Activity #20 Examining Sports in The Media: What Does the Media Actually Cover in
Sports, and Could it Influence the Learning Environment in My Gymnasium?
Jamie P. Ganz

Activity #21 Boosting Social and Historical Imagination Through Process Drama
Gumiko Monobe

Activity #22 The Personal Collage and Director's Concept Board Exercises for an Introduction to Theatre Class
Yuko Kurahashi

Activity #23 Out in the Field: Transforming Pre-Service Art Educators Through Field
and Other Experiences
Linda Hoeptner Poling and Juliann Dorff

Activity #24 Using Metaphor to Communicate Meaning Through a Visual
Dillon Sedar

Activity #25 Interpreting artworks through the “Question Tableau:” Cultivating Community in the Art Classroom
Eryc M.P. Watson

Activity #26 A Model for Environmental Literacy and Social Justice: Tourism in the Bahamas
Sonya L. Wisdom and Thalia Micklewhite

Educators in the 21st century understand the importance of fostering a sense of social awareness in their students; however, it is sometimes a challenge to do so in ways that integrate seamlessly into curricula. Indeed, social awareness should not be developed as a skill unto itself but used as a lens through which to examine myriad disciplines and topics. In Reading Between the Lines, Dowdy and Cushner have compiled 26 lessons that offer educators useful resources for embedding social awareness instruction into their teaching in ways that are student centered and collaborative. The goal of these lessons is to develop social awareness literacy, and they help teachers simultaneously create a sense of community in their classrooms, reinforce content area concepts, and build basic and critical literacy knowledge. Lessons focus on a variety of subject areas, from social studies to art to vocational training. Because most lessons are intended for teacher educators' use, this book is recommended predominantly for professional developers and instructors in higher education. Summing Up: Recommended. Research and professional collections


This powerful transdisciplinary collection of hands-on activities will motivate students to become culturally competent, critical thinkers who can move beyond the more simplistic individualized notions of cultural knowledge, social justice and diversity; toward intercultural competence frameworks where learners can truly see themselves as global citizens who can enact transformative connections and partnerships in their local and regional contexts in ways that acknowledge that we share our collective future with many others. This collection allows students to feel intellectually and emotionally safe to reflect upon, analyze, expand, and explore social issues and topics, presenting opportunities, pedagogies, resources and practical methods that expose and challenge dominant views and structural inequality; and to develop and understand the complexities of our multicultural homes, schools, workplaces, and communities, ... all with the goal of building a shared world fully committed to equity and justice. This body of work comes at an opportune time as many educators face curricular challenges in teaching about, within, and across cultures, into the process of teaching and learning.
Enrique G. Murillo, Ph.D.,executive director, Latino Education and Advocacy Days (LEAD) Organization

Reading Between the Lines positions literacy and art as a critical and essential framework that supports awareness and social action around challenging issues that emerge in today’s classrooms. Dowdy and Cushner have brought together the voices of scholars and teachers who have crafted hands-on literacy and arts-based activities that will inspire educators across disciplines to engage students in important discussions around social justice.

Peggy Albers, professor, language and literacy,Georgia State University

Everyday, everywhere, academics committed to social justice look for resources on how to better train future educators to serve students who have been historically marginalized, neglected, and mistreated. We are in search of ways to operationalize definitions of social justice that not only increase learning opportunities for all students, but that are also engaging. Dowdy and Cushner have put together a comprehensive collection of writings in literacy education and the arts that support us in these efforts.
Gretchen Givens Generett, Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research, Duquesne University