I’ve developed a textbook in which struggling students gain class credit for self-reflective writing, to improve metacognition, self-directed learning, and grades. It helps me know my students better, and adjust to their needs. I’d like to develop a teacher’s guide, to more effectively share my work with a wider audience.
Robert Comeau has taught English at Another Course to College for 17 years, where he’s developed a parallel curriculum for struggling students. This work progressed with the help of the Calderwood Teachers as Writers Fellowship, where he did inquiry-based research. Robert now facilitates teacher inquiry at the BTU Inquiry Project.
BLOG POST #1
I will develop a teacher’s guide for using writing as an intervention for struggling students. I’ve developed a textbook in which struggling students gain class credit for self-reflective writing, to improve metacognition, self-directed learning, and grades. It helps me know my students better, and to adjust to their needs. I’d like to develop a teacher’s guide to accompany this textbook, to help share my work with a wider audience. I don’t know how the work will be received, or what challenges its use beyond my classroom will present. I’m undertaking this professional learning grant to find out.
While teaching English in the Boston Public Schools for the last 17 years, I have seen many inner-city students thrive and head off to college success. I’ve met many former students who have finished college and embarked upon professional careers. In the students that I teach each day, I see examples of young people defying the stereotypes put upon students of color and working class kids. I see their intelligence, resilience and determination in their work, and in the stories of their lives. However, I am troubled by some of their peers who fail to thrive in school, sometimes a third of the class, but often 10%. I had been teaching for a decade in Boston when I traced a pattern that threaded through my talks with failing students: “I’m just lazy,” they would say, over and over again, from different students the same story. There were variations. “I can’t write,” and “I’m not smart” were different fibers in the same drab fabric in which each failing student cloaked their stories. They often came to class in September already defeated, arriving from summer school after failing junior classes. They left in June for another round of July classes, and maybe graduation in late August. This sub-section of my students seemed thoroughly conditioned. They had habits of mind, of behavior, and of work that routinized failure. I worried where this would lead to once they left high school. I wondered if teachers helped failing students to change their self-perception, the thoughts and stories they have about themselves, these kids would do better in school.
At Another Course to College (ACC), we serve kids from all over the city. Most of our students are Black and Hispanic, and more than 80% have been on free or reduced lunch. Many of our students are on solid academic paths to college, and report doing well when they get there. Top students have gone on to succeed at schools such as Harvard, Williams, Tufts and Wellesley. Many others have found success at state schools and community colleges. However, other students struggle with motivation, family problems, personal trauma, detachment from school and negative self-image, burdens inherited from systemic racism and classism. From this population come those who fail for the year, who fall through the cracks, who don’t get to college or don’t stay there if they do.
To help struggling students change, and to help me better know and respond to their needs, I developed a guide for self analysis, in which students could write about their problems in school, and plan out their own solutions. The text yielded some success. One student had never opened up to his guidance counselor, or to anyone at the school. When he stopped doing homework in senior year, I gave him the book to write in, and whoa, did he write. A lot of stress and trauma got vented on the pages of the guide, and I brought them to his guidance counselor. The young man had deep troubles at home, and the school convinced his family to agree to counseling, which the guidance counselor arranged. He completed his courses through online credit recovery, and he graduated in June. Other students analyzed their own situations, and made adjustments that lead to better grades. Overall, the students began to accept the guide as a regular part of English class. No one ever complained that the writing was a burden, or seemed foreign to our analytical work. It generally felt like a natural extension of the kind of deep thinking I ask students to do about life and literature. Some well-performing students also asked for the book, to work on solving problems of their own, beyond academics.
This text has undergone several revisions. In 2013, I began an overhaul of the guide for self-analysis, in a teacher inquiry fellowship directed by Prof. Denise Patmon, with the Calderwood Teachers as Writers program at UMass Boston. The research I read helped me to see a greater need for student choice in the process of self-reflection and behavior change, and so the text now has a greater variety of choices. Research has also helped me see a greater role that emotions play in the dynamics between thought and behavior, and students now have regular options for expressive writing. I’ve learned that the ability to tell one’s own story can lead to better mental and physical health outcomes, and there’s now a section for narrative writing and revision. Research on self-regulated learning helped me see the need for a goal-setting section, and it helped me to adjust the problem-solving cycle, building in the key elements of self-monitoring and self-consequencing. Research into habit-change helped me to add a self-monitoring component there as well, along with attention to cue and reward sequencing that shapes problematic behavior, but can also reshape a habit into a productive routine. Finally, reflection and reading into the role of race and psychology have helped me realize that students need options to write about the roles of race, class, language and gender in their lives, which play no small part in the barriers to achievement of this nation’s young people of color. As a White teacher of mostly Black and Hispanic students, I need regular instruction in cultural competence, and the best teachers are my students. Reading their reflections on race and society, along with their writings on their personal strengths, goals, and struggles, helps me to better know, and teach, my diverse learners.
Overall, this book aims to give students the class time and tools to tell their stories, clarify their goals, express their emotions, reshape self-talk, decolonize their self-image, de-routinize problem behaviors, and make habits out of productive choices. I’ve called this book Know Thyself.
Overall, Know Thyself was designed to use reflective and expressive writing to develop and strengthen the self-regulation of struggling learners, by linking student thought, writing, metacognition, and behavior. It has been my hope to plant the seeds of change in the minds of my lowest-performing students, and to nurture their growth toward independent academic success. Their writing has inspired much change in my own practice, as I better see my teaching from their perspective, and better know their goals, strengths, challenges, and personal histories.
I am now working on a teacher’s guide to using Know Thyself, called Know Thy Students, so that I can reflect upon and refine my own use of the book, distribute it more widely, and pass on tips for effective practices. In this guide, I will emphasize:
- Using student writing to inform and invigorate our responses to struggling students, to help individualize instruction, respond with flexibility to the needs of the whole student, and to form stronger and more caring relationships with our young people.
- Responding to student writing with restraint, respect, compassion, and an eye for getting students further services when they need it.
- Avoiding a “therapeutic relationship” with students, while encouraging their open self-expression.
- Putting students into dialogue with themselves, more than with you.
- Fostering metacognition, and self-directed learning.
- Teaching for narrative competence, to help students tell a better version of their own stories.
- Putting race on the table, and leaving it there, as we acknowledge its effect on students, school, and society, and we help students meet their goals in an institution that too often fails them.
- Cultivating counter-narratives to racist discourse, especially around achievement, avoiding the bootstrap myth, and acknowledging with students the uneven playing fields created by race and class in America, while celebrating strength and growth.
- Learning and honoring students’ individual stories, and a sense of their collective struggles, to gain cultural competence.
- Combining the textbook with a student-centered, constructivist model of instruction, so that choices, analysis, and deeper understanding happen in their classwork, and in their reflective writing in Know Thyself, building a synergy between the two.
- Balancing the use of the text for academic credit and reflection, while avoiding its over-use. As a parallel curriculum, it shouldn’t replace the content, skill and language goals of any course, though it can compliment them.
- Giving free choice for students to write where they want in the text, but recommending sections for students when opportunities emerge from their writing or behavior.
I hope that in sending this work out to a wider audience, I will get feedback for further improvements. I look forward to bringing this work to an interactive presentation at the BTU professional learning conference in June of 2016, and am deeply grateful to the Boston Teachers Union for this opportunity.
BLOG POST #2
Adapting my textbook for reflective writing from my particular classroom context for use by a broader audience has been the biggest challenge for me in this work. I have to think about how others might use the text, while passing along some reflections on how it has been useful for me. I’ve been working on the teacher’s edition to support distribution, and it has forced me to reflect upon and articulate my use of the book. The teacher’s guide I’m developing is a revision and update of earlier work undertaken at the Calderwood Teachers as Writers Fellowship with Prof. Denise Patmon of UMass Boston, and at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, in the Teaching to Transform Society course with Prof. Aaliyah El-Amin. I am grateful to both professors for their insights and encouragement.
In the teacher’s guide, I’ve described the Know Thyself text as part of a “parallel curriculum,” a plan for developing students who struggle in class, either occasionally or regularly. In writing this section, I came to realize that every teacher, at some level, has two curriculums at work at the same time. The first one is transparent, and comes with a syllabus. Teachers have a formal plan for developing deeper knowledge and skills within their subject matter: biology, literature, algebra, etc. Every teacher also has a less formal, parallel curriculum for developing learners. It is sometimes built of pep talks to encourage best efforts, mini-lessons on how to study, or admonitions about working harder. It comes with private check-ins with students who seem to be having a bad day, or who are heading toward course failure. I’ve come to see Know Thyself as a way to formalize this kind of parallel curriculum, to base it in research, and to give students more agency within it.
I’ve also written a section advocating for the awarding of partial class-credit for use of the book. Students who are doing writing for personal change are doing academic work, though not the same work as students who are ready to do the regular classwork that will prepare them for college success. In my classroom, the book is part of a system for struggling students, in which they gain some credit for participation, when they come unprepared for seminar discussion, because they haven’t read their homework. In my world literature seminar, students contribute their own arguments about each night’s reading, which they complete independently as homework. They earn class participation scores, 35% of their grade, by offering their analysis of the reading, backing up their assertions with evidence from the text. I ask follow-up questions to help them dig deeper, while testing and developing their understanding of the readings. If they can’t make an argument about the reading, or can’t back-up their assertions with evidence from the text, they don’t earn full credit. They receive partial credit for listening to the class discussion, taking notes, and contributing a comment, even if they haven’t read. Another way to earn partial credit is to write in the Know Thyself text.
Writing in the book is an option. It’s an option that most students take. The reasons why students choose to write reflective pieces were captured in an anonymous survey. “The book allowed me the chance to vent,” said one student. Another liked “being able to get everything out of my system.” Another student connected letting go of negative emotions with turning the mind to solving problems: “I like to release what I’m feeling through writing. This made me reflect on my problems and it helped create solutions.” One wrote about liking “That it was a private journal for nobody else but the teacher. It is encouraging to write personal things w/o the opinions of others to judge you.” Another liked “The fact that I am able to free write and express myself without having to confess to the world about my problem. Being able to let Mr. C or Mr. H know how I’m feeling without having it be forced out of me. The fact that it is confidential and reflective at the same time.” One other student mentioned the value of communicating with the teacher: “I get to express my feelings, and get feedback. Also, Mr. Comeau really is interested in the things what we write.”
The most frequent positive mentioned about the book, though, was the benefit of solving one’s own problems. One student gave a good description of metacognition when writing that “I can break things about myself down. I ask me questions.” Another described working in the book this way: “It was a way to escape reality for a brief moment and help me process the problems and really notice how big of an impact it had on me.” One brief but gratifying comment noted: “I understand my problems much better than I used to before.” Another appreciation for self-development read: “It gave me a chance to see my bad habits and set goals for myself for next time.”
Several students wrote about liking the freedom of self-expression without strict writing expectations or performance rubrics. One wrote, “I think the most exciting thing was that the Know Thyself had a sense of freedom. That you can write anything you want about yourself and sometimes even see your own growth throughout the year.” Another liked “The free writing. I liked being able to write how I felt without restrictions.” A similar response explained: “Just writing was good. It was really good to just let go and write the way I wanted.” Succinctly, another liked “Free writing. No standards.”
These responses made me realize that students get very little opportunity at school to just write. As one student put it: “What I like the most about working in the Know Thyself book is that have the choice to express myself which I don’t get the time to do ever. Can self-evaluate my issues and personally analyze my process of thought and try the next day to make a better choice.” Given an opportunity for self-expression seems to open the way for self-reflection, and personal change. Only one student gave a negative comment here, but it seemed to me like a left-handed complement. Asked what the student liked the most: “Nothing. Or, it gave me something to do….” Even this student was happy to have some direction during a class for which he or she was unprepared. No doubt other students found this useful, too.
Teachers who use the text will find that some students over-use it. I wrote a section for the teacher’s guide as advice for moving students from over-use to more productive class work. Writing for personal change is not the same as personal change, of course. Students who are most inured to course failure tend to write the same things in their Know Thyself books, again and again, putting in time, and even really desiring change, but not gaining traction. These students need to experience academic work again, and so I adjust their class work to include a piece of guided reading and reflective writing. When possible, I assign a student teacher or tutor to guide their work during class, sometimes in a separate space. Normally, I give these students a section of that night’s independent reading, so that the next day, they can come in and experience some success in class discussion, priming the pump for more academic work that’s genuinely independent. However, I caution teachers that this process will not produce miracles. It takes time to change habits built over years, and change is slow going, with regular setbacks. I have seen student make remarkable change over the months, though, and helping a student going from regular failure to college success is one of the most rewarding experiences of a teaching career.
Wanting to shape teacher responses to student writing, to help keep the book student-centered, I wrote a section about responding to their entries. I really want the use of Know Thyself to be about students coming to their own solutions for their own problems, as defined by them. This means avoiding didactic responses to their writings, where I “correct” their thinking. I can ask questions, but not offer answers. I can walk a student through the process of solving a problem, but the solution has to be chosen by the student, not prescribed by the teacher. Most of all, I can encourage students to think about their own thinking, to develop metacognition around their academic lives, and the parts of their personal lives that impact school. I can even model how my own thinking and behavior connect with my goals, my history of change, and my hopes for the future. I can share inspiring stories of change from their peers as well. However, the real work for personal change belongs to each student alone.
Change is hard, and slow. To align expectations around using the text with the realities of meaningful change, I wrote a section about managing expectations. This is as important for teachers as it is for students. Students need to be reminded that change takes time, and that regular regression is part of the long term process of meaningful change. They tend to be hard on themselves after falling back into old patterns of course failure, and negative thinking can spiral in on itself, leading to giving-up on academic success. Short conversations, brief written feedback, and little pep talks can help remind students of the larger process of success and change, when all they see is the minor setback.
In a similar way, teachers need to manage their own expectations around student change, as well as their own. I need to remind myself to be patient with students who are often working to change behavior set over the course of several years, or a lifetime of schooling. It is irrational, and unproductive, to expect quick and easy change. To continue the difficult work of helping students to embrace positive academic behavior, I need to accept that change occurs in varying arcs with different students. Some need more time than others, and some students will not change in time to pass my course.
I also need to remember that I am working to change, too. I have regular backsliding just as my students do. I need to be aware of my own goals, to be patient with myself, to focus on my strengths, and think through problems that block productive change. As a teacher, I am working to be more supportive, less reactive, more reflective, and more flexible. As a person, I’ve also had to struggle with changing habits re-enforced over many years. As an ex-smoker with a 20-year habit, I know from personal experience that change is hard. As a man who has gone from dropping out of high school to earning a Harvard MEd, I know that change is possible. When responding to student writing, I sometimes use personal stories on the process of change to help support my students in their efforts. Moreover, these stories help keep me humble, and remind me of the horizontal relationships in the classroom, where we’re all working to get better.
BLOG POST #3
The most difficult section of Know Thyself and the teacher’s guide for me to write have been the sections on race and class. I believe that most educators in Boston would agree that race and class dramatically impact the educational realities of our students, and that systemic inequalities and racism add to the struggles of under-performing students. In designing Know Thyself, I’ve incorporated writing prompts and whole sections where students can reflect and express themselves on issues of race, class, identity and school. Students of color and working class kids have narratives put upon them by culture that make low and negative expectations a part of their daily reality. Research shows that high-achieving students from communities suffering from systemic racism, such as African Americans, benefit from developing counter-narratives that work against the dominant stories that society has told about them (Levinson, 2012).
While mainstream culture too often sees negatives and deficits, people equipped with a counter-narrative see the story of their people in terms of strength and perseverance: “his narrative teaches African Americans’ struggle as an ennobling history, as one that reveals African Americans’ collective power and resilience” (p. 117). Building a counter-narrative can help students persevere in their efforts to succeed, and to take pride in their rich history of overcoming oppression, and thrive in spite of obstacles. I hope that writing in Know Thyself will help them develop counter-narratives to racist and classist discourse in popular media and culture, as students explore their strengths, develop positive self-talk, solve their own problems, and read and respond to powerful works by great thinkers on race, class, and social justice.
This year, I had even added a segments to “Tell your own story” section where students write their ethno-biography and craft counter-narratives. However, with half the school year gone, only one student has chosen to write in these segments. At the same time, many more students are writing in the “Decolonize the mind” section, responding to great thinkers on race, class, language, gender and liberation. My hunch is that asking students to directly develop a counter-narrative is a lot to ask, and probably not the right approach. The counter-narrative is built into the rest of Know Thyself, from students writing their own stories, to exploring strengths, shaping more positive self-talk, setting goals, reforming habits, solving their own problems, and reading and responding to positive models of achievement and intellectual history from writers of color.
For the 2016-17 school year, I am removing the sections in “Tell your own story” that directly ask students to write their stories in terms of ethnicity and counter-narrative, in favor of a more indirect, guided method, already present in the rest of Know Thyself. Asking students to develop a counter-narrative directly seems too abstract, and perhaps unnatural. Guiding that development more organically seems to yield better results, and will hopefully lead more students back to telling their own stories in the streamlined autobiography section. I am also writing a section for the Teacher’s Guide on helping students to develop counter-narratives to the racist discourse students face in our society, including schools.
As a White educator of mostly Black and Hispanic students, I feel like addressing race is both crucial, and uncomfortable. Throughout the development of the text, I’ve worked with colleagues of color who have been generous in their support and advice on the work, and its treatment of issues of race. The most pushback on the issue I have received is from White colleagues, who express anxiety over the role of White educators addressing race, and even our ability to teach students of color. While addressing race is difficult, it is also essential. Here’s what I wrote for the teacher’s guide to using Know Thyself:
Cultural Competence: How student writing can change teachers
While the use of Know Thyself by struggling students has had a positive impact on average grade and passing rate in my class, these improvements came from both teacher and student change. I saw slow improvements from my struggling students, as they developed the skills of self-regulated learners, but more from adjustments to my own teaching methods, as I came to know these students in a deeper way, and aligned my strategies and policies to their needs, abilities, and personal situations.
As a teacher, I gained cultural competence, learning more from the perspectives and experiences of my students as I read their writing, and talked with them about their lives. This led to stronger relationships, and more sensitivity and nuance in my instruction and coaching. In January of 2014, the faculty at ACC received professional development in this area from Ron Walker, one of the founding members of the Coalition of Schools Educating Boys of Color. He described cultural competence as a skill that helps us put aside assumptions about one another, and really listen and learn from our students.
As a White teacher of mostly Black and Hispanic students, developing cultural competence is an essential skill for me, and one I have to work on renewing and improving every year. Through Know Thyself, I learn more about what my students go through in life, and their writing helps them express voices of strength and resilience. They teach me about their experiences, and it forms closer relationships between us. Students teach me to be careful of the narrative I put on them as a teacher. It’s better to listen to their stories, and where need be, encourage them to write better endings.
Issues around race and class
The Boston Public Schools is a segregated system, in a segregated city. Race and class impact the daily realities in our classrooms and in our lives. Most of my students are Black and Hispanic. I am White, as are most of my fellow teachers at my school, and across the city. When designing a parallel curriculum to help struggling students, I understood that issues of race and class impact the experience my students have in school. Know Thyself gives students regular opportunities to write about the impact of race, class, gender, and native language on their lives at school and beyond. Reading their writing helps me to develop cultural competence, and to maintain it.
Racist practices and institutions have helped to put negative self-images into struggling students, and those images are too often reinforced by teachers. Albert Mimi, in The Colonizer and the Colonized, describes how racist discourse works to justify colonial privilege, and in turn, is often adopted into the self-image of the colonized (1991). That the colonized are “lazy” is taken as a fact by the colonizer, used to justify and explain the poverty of the colony and the uselessness of its development, and finally, it is adopted at times as self-image by the colonized. From my earliest years as a teacher, I was struck by how often my students who struggle described themselves as lazy. I was saddened, but not surprised, when last year, I saw scrawled on the white board of a Roxbury school an admonishment by a teacher to his class: “The truth is, you’re just lazy.” Know Thyself asks students to check-in on their self-narratives and self-talk. Part of that work means developing counter-narratives to the racist discourse that impacts the lives and learning of our students.
Another aspect of that work is to present to students some counter-narratives, in a section of the text called “Decolonize the mind.” This part of the text presents images of successful academics of color, who offer analysis and narratives that take on race, identity, society and school. I began this section after a young man in my class, whose friend had just been murdered, wrote in his Know Thyself: “As an African American male I am destined to failure from birth.” I realized that if my student can say this about himself, I am not putting forth a counter-narrative, and so am essentially going along with the racist discourse. I began work on the section I’ve called “Decolonize the mind,” and I teach a companion unit for the last two months in my year with seniors, on postcolonial literature and theory. As I’ve added more readings on race and culture to my curriculum, students are more frequently turning to this section to read and respond to great thinkers on race, class, and society. Of course, part of the process is the decolonization of my own mind, as a White teacher. I’ve called students lazy, too, and if I hope to change my students’ prospect for success, I need to start by changing myself.
Part of that change has been made possible by generous colleagues of color who have helped me develop this text. I’ve worked closely with peers, professors and students of color, sharing Know Thyself from its conception through its evolution with members of the Black and Hispanic educational community in Boston, who have helped me incorporate race as an essential part of the process of self-reflection and healing for students and their teachers. The most important contributor in this regard has been Professor Denise Patmon of UMass Boston, who introduced me to critical race theory, and whose encouragement and guidance has led me to this point of sharing the work with the wider community.
There are dangers in undertaking this work, as a White male teacher of mostly Black and Hispanic students. One could fall into the traps of a deficit model, seeing struggling students as problems to be fixed. I believe it is possible, and compelling, to undertake this work by focusing on the strengths and resilience of these students, who show the courage and intelligence of self-analysis and positive change. Their writing has illuminated for me the deficits in my own teaching practices, and it continues to inspire my own self-analysis and positive change.
One could fall into the narrative of the “White Savior,” a paternal/maternal figure born of colonial discourse, who brings light to the dark people as an act of charity. I believe that experience in the difficult work fostered by Know Thyself will humble the would-be savior, who will realize that the teacher better save himself, and students will do the same.
One could fall into a mythical portrait of the student of color, who can do no wrong, who is a perfect innocent, a pure victim of a corrupt system, and if we only align the school to his perfections, all problems would be solved. I believe that this narrative is the other side of the same colonial coin, stamped on the front with the image of the White Savior, and on the back with the image of the Noble Savage. Either view is part of a binary that working with actual students for a decade should cure. No one is pure, and everyone can change. Just ask students about their goals, and if they are meeting them, and what they need to change to get what they want out of life.
One could fall into the traps of the “Bootstrap” narrative, where one sees the parallel curriculum as a path for change that students will take or leave, and it’s up to them to sink or swim. Many teachers, in my experience, have bootstrap narratives about their own success, which they see as totally earned through their own hard efforts. The problem with the bootstrap narrative is that it leaves out realities of privilege and of all the help from caring adults that made our success possible. I believe that Know Thyself is a mandate for the teacher as much as the student, and change in the student must mean change in the teacher. If I ask students to change to meet my inflexible curriculum, I don’t Know Myself very well, and can’t see the hypocrisy of asking my students to change, but refusing to change myself. The more I’ve read my students’ writing, the more I’ve been able to adapt to individual needs. As a colleague of mine has advised: Use your students as informants on your own practice. Reading and hearing the students who struggle in my class has helped me to change more than any professional development so far.
Through reading student writing in Know Thyself, I have seen the world in glimpses through their experiences, from young women who are accused of “acting White” for using academic discourse, to a young man who fears for his life walking home from school each night, feeling, due to his race and gender, “destined to failure from birth.” I better understand why a young woman has her head down in class, when I read that she was up all night in the emergency room with her brother who was stabbed. I better understand the burdens of poverty, of students working two jobs to help out at home, or minding young siblings while mom works two shifts. I also hear the frustrations of my students who struggle to understand the readings I assign, or do the analysis I demand. I better know who needs help, and what kind, and when I’m not doing enough to support struggling learners. I hear back from them when I’ve taken the wrong tone, or failed to offer the right supports. I better see my own limited experience and expertise, by seeing my class through the eyes of my students. I see more clearly the changes I need to make in my own practice. Every day, I am given strong motivations to improve my teaching, through the compelling voices of my students.
Freire, P. (2000). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Continuum International Publishing Group.
Levinson, M. (2012). No citizen left behind (Vol. 13). Harvard University Press.
Thank you for reading about my work. I would love to meet and speak with you at the BTU Professional Learning Conference in June. If you’d like to join me at my workshop there, please consider the following questions for discussion.
- What role do you think teachers can take in reaching students, beyond academics, through writing and dialogue?
- How should teachers address race and class in our learning with students?
- What roles should White teachers play in talking with students about race? What roles should middle class teachers play in talking with students about class? How is the role different for teachers of color, and for teachers of working class backgrounds?
- Should teachers do more work to reach “the whole student,” or less? Do you fear that using a book like Know Thyself would take time away from academics, or do you believe it would help to support academic learning?
- What training do teachers need to engage in dialogue with students around problem solving, self-regulated learning, expressive writing, goal setting, and decolonial discourse?
- How have you developed “cultural competence?” How do you continue to expand and renew it?
- What encourages you about this work in Know Thyself? What troubles you?