I moved from Chile to the United States at the age of 16, transitioning from an urban international school to a suburban public school. The two schools differed markedly, but what most struck me then and now was the racial and socioeconomic stratification of my new school. Suddenly, the pan-ethnic label “Latino” grouped me with Salvadorian, Bolivian, and Peruvian peers with drastically different educational trajectories and lowered teacher expectations, perceptibly, for all of us. That I was in International Baccalaureate honors courses rather than the vocational track courses in which most of these peers were enrolled made me question the ways that race, class, and linguistic background could structure one’s educational trajectory and life opportunities. Later on in life, as a mentor to Latinx high school students in college and as an elementary school teacher in East Palo Alto and Harlem, I strived to combat similar educational inequity for emergent bilinguals from within classroom walls.
My teaching experiences have affirmed that the classroom can be a locus of change, but that equitable, democratic, conscious education in schools depends on equitable, democratic, and conscious pedagogies in teacher preparation and teacher education courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels. To this end, my teaching strives to to engage the curiosity, creativity, and capacity to learn of my students by providing them with challenging curriculum, ample scaffolds and supports, detailed and constructive feedback, and a degree of choice within learning activities.
These principles apply to the range of courses that I have taught and designed. Whether with practicing educators or undergraduates across a range of majors, I believe that maintaining a student-centered curriculum nurtures the curiosity and passion that helps students on their path to being critical thinkers and transformative agents, whether the course is about teaching methods or about sociolinguistic theory.
CLDE 5140: Multicultural Education
CLDE 5825: Methods of Content Teaching for Bilingual Learners
EDFN 1000: Equality, Rights, & Education: Segregation, Desegregation, & Re-segregation
CLDE 1000: Language, Power, & Identity: International Perspectives
Notre Dame de Namur University
EDU 4107: Foundations of Teaching English Learners
EDUC 264: Métodos y Materiales en los Salones Bilingües (Teaching Fellow)
EDUC 299: Educating for Equity & Democracy (Teaching Assistant)
CSRE 121X: Hip Hop, Youth Identities, & the Politics of Language (Teaching Assistant)
CSRE 15A: #OccupyArt: Immigration, Nation, & the Art of Occupation (Teaching Assistant)