This year I am the only one teaching a course on that topic, so hopefully I will be able to muster up 10 people to take the course so it will run! It will meet one Saturday during the summer and then two Monday evenings in October for 2-3 hours each.
My proposed dissertation is on the topic of how teachers get to know their culturally and linguistically diverse students and how teachers who use scripted curricula go about creating culturally responsive lessons, so I have been very interested in culturally responsive instruction and reading all about it for the last three years. But, I am still really nervous to teach a class on it! At some point soon, I am very interested in beginning to teach adults (in addition to staying in the classroom with kids), so this is a perfect segue into that. But, despite all of the work I have done, I am far from an expert and always second guess myself when it comes to this new endeavor!
My goal for the class is to somewhat replicate the experience that I had participating on my school's CARE team this year. CARE stands for collaborative action research for equity. We had to choose a few focal students (students of color) and then take steps to get to know more about them and their families which is referred to as "below the line" information. Then we had to create culturally responsive lessons that were geared towards engaging those students, building relationships with those students and having them build relationships with their peers etc. But, I'd also like the class to be meaningful for teachers who have already done the CARE training and want to do more with culturally responsive instruction. The class is only worth 1 credit, but since it's my first toe dip into teaching adults, I really want to make it rock.
So... for inspiration, I just bought Lisa Delpit's new book. She wrote Other People's Children and a few others. Her most recent book was just published in March, 2012. I am excited to start reading it because I feel like it might be a good text to use for my course or maybe just to pull from.
In about 30 minutes I have a skype appointment with my adviser and I am anxious to see what he has to say about my dissertation proposal. I was really hoping to defend at the end of this month, but at this point, that is not realistic. I did my part and wrote my proposal draft and turned it in two weeks ago, but there are other issues that are holding up progress. I still need to find one additional person to serve on my committee and despite asking several people, I have not been able to get someone yet. That is frustrating because I need to find one person and then also an alternative and then the university can take up to 4 weeks to approve the committee. I am worried that the time line I was really hoping for (which would have me collecting data over the summer) is not going to happen. That means I will probably be collecting data starting in the fall and finishing my dissertation in 2013 instead of by the end of 2012. I guess I shouldn't be in such a rush, but I was really hoping to use the time off from work this summer to get my interviews done. It's going to be a lot harder during the school year. My ultimate goal is to have the entire dissertation done by the time Grace turns 1.
Speaking of Grace....she is doing great. Today is our first day home without Daddy Sneaker. He took 10 days off from work, but returned today. Fortunately my very best friend Cristina is flying in tonight so I get a few days with her. It's just so nice to have extra hands to help with the baby so I don't have to do everything one-handed. So far though, we are doing pretty good on our own today and I am hoping to get in a good nap this afternoon once my skype call is over and Grace gets fed again.