African-Centered Pedagogy: Developing Schools of Achievement by Peter C. Murrell Jr.

By Peter C. Murrell Jr.

Integrates the old, cultural, political, and developmental concerns of the African American adventure right into a idea for the schooling success of African American youngsters.

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That is, helping students connect the known to the unknown, [and] current skills to new ones in order to enable them [the learners] to negotiate the power structure and the codes of the system, but also to learn to critique the system itself. 5. Working with, not against, individuals, families, and communities—or drawing family and community resources, demonstrating respect and consciously avoiding becoming a wedge between students and their families. This synthesis of five qualities of practice is useful for articulating an African-centered pedagogy—a theory of teaching practice—because they provide a foundation for articulating the system of theory and practice for successful work with African American children.

But there is a deeper phase of practice, phase two, characterized by a deeper structural understanding of teaching practice and instructional process in institutional, cultural, historical, and political context. It requires a deep understanding of the social, political, and historical context of education. , Irvine, 1990; Ladson-Billings, 1994) and critical pedagogy (Darder, 1991; McLaren, 1989). African-centered pedagogy developed in these pages is both a phase one and phase two pedagogy. This page intentionally left blank.

Results are identical for Hispanics. Thoughtful urban educators who have been working to improve the quality of education for these children have long argued that the crisis in urban schools requires a more sophisticated response than that of “tooling up teachers” and “raising the bar” for students. It is beyond dispute that the standardized testing industry is part of the mechanism of social inequality. Any system that participates in the sorting and selecting of children and their opportunities based upon some ostensibly “objective measure” of ability is, without question, a system that perpetuates inequality.

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