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Reflections

#TeachTruth: Working on a (Former) Plantation

During the weekend of June 11-12, teachers across the country hosted events as part of the Teach Truth Days of Action. These events serve to contradict the slate of bills proposed by the GOP that prevent the teaching of real history. For the record, I believe I DO teach CRT (critical race theory) conceptually in […]

A Writer’s Life: Building Community

A version of my truth is that I became a published author before I did what most people do, which is spend time in community with other writers, sharing early work, taking classes and workshops, applying for residencies, and learning to perfect the craft prior to embarking on the big formal adventure. So that’s what […]

Teaching TKAM: A Dystopic Mockingbird

For my final TKAM post this year, I submit the final assignment my students are working on: a classic 5 paragraph literary analysis essay. All year we have built the skills to write arguments, find evidence, provide context, and do a particular kind of analysis structure we call Quote the Quote. Earlier this spring, I […]

Teaching TKAM: Read these too!

If you have to teach TKAM, there are a few books I recommend to supplement both teacher and student understanding AND to bring the book into the 21st century. Adding these books increased my students’ exposure to non-fiction texts and also brought in the external ideas we needed to read TKAM critically. Just Mercy the […]

Teaching TKAM: The Hard History of Lynching

If you teach To Kill A Mockingbird, you should teach the truth about lynching. For the past two years, I have taken the opportunity of this book to tell students about my work with the Montgomery County Lynching Memorial Project. I give a presentation to all four sections of English that includes definitions of lynching, […]


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