Scott Ritchie

Literacy Web Seminar
September 19, 7:00 p.m. (EDT/USA)

“Walking the Talk: How Eight P-12 Educators Came to Teach Critically”

Presented by Scott Ritchie, Ph.D.,
Kennesaw State University, USA

This in-depth qualitative interview study explored the critical pedagogical practices of eight P-12 educators as well as influential life and teacher preparation experiences. Marilyn Cochran-Smith (2004) and other teacher educators have called for more research on the conditions supporting teaching for social justice. This study started with teachers who had previously published about their critical teaching and traced backward to the experiences that led them to teach for justice. Following Seidman (2006), Dr. Ritchie conducted a series of three in-depth life history interviews with each participant. He analyzed data using an inductive, thematic analysis, guided by a Freirean critical pedagogical theoretical framework. The study concluded that critical educators help their students situate inequities within a critical sociopolitical analysis and take agency to solve problems. The biggest influences on these critical educators were radicalizing events, progressive networks, and radicalizing mentors. These data have implications for teacher education, especially regarding admissions and recruitment.

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