EDU 341 Literacy in the Elementary Schools
An exploration of the theoretical and practical approaches to teaching reading and writing within a comprehensive elementary literacy program.
Education is more than imparting knowledge and defining the parameters of discipline. The best educators understand issues of power, history, self-identity and the possibility of collective agency. Our curriculum and field experiences are designed to meet not only the needs of students and teachers, but their communities. We help you develop as a public intellectual and ethical citizen as you earn your Connecticut teaching certification, which has reciprocity in 45 states and the District of Columbia. You learn to see education as an opportunity to create a multiracial, multi-vocal democracy that can address today’s serious social, economic and environmental problems. The program consists of a sequence of courses, in addition to an outside major, and culminates in a semester of student teaching. We have a reputation for producing excellent educators; our alumni teach in elementary, secondary and music schools across the country and the globe.
In the Education Department, we emphasize fieldwork. All of our education courses have a field placement component—observation and participation, assistant teaching, or full-time student teaching in local elementary or secondary schools. Through these experiences, you explore issues and perspectives about education in the context of everyday classrooms, which will make you a better teacher.
The certification program provides the flexibility for you to study away and still earn certification in four years. Our students have studied around the world, in Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe. Many also apply to the College's interdisciplinary centers to earn certificates in community action, international studies, the environment or arts and technology. In the Education Department, we work with you to draft a plan that ensures you can take full advantage of the opportunities available here.
Connecticut College is a member of CETE, the Consortium for Excellence in Teacher Education, along with Barnard, Bowdoin, Brandeis, Brown, Bryn Mawr, Dartmouth, Harvard, Middlebury, Mount Holyoke, Princeton, Smith, Swarthmore, the University of Pennsylvania, Vassar, Wellesley, Wheaton and Yale. These 16 member institutions share a common commitment to a broad liberal arts education for those entering the teaching profession. Their teacher education graduates are characterized by breadth of study, a major in liberal arts discipline, and work in education that enables them to meet state certification in reciprocal states.
Lauren Anderson's research interests are situated at the intersections of education policy, teacher education, and K-12 school and classroom practice. In particular, she explores how teachers and school leaders make sense of and mediate federal, state and local policy in the context of their daily work. Lauren teaches courses focused on educational foundations, urban schooling, literacy pedagogy and elementary teaching.
As a teacher and scholar, Sandy Grande centers her work in the belief that education is the heart of a critical democracy. She asserts that questions about education cannot be reduced to disciplinary parameters, but must include issues of power, history, self-identity and the possibility of collective agency and revolutionary struggle. Thus, rather than reject the language of politics, Professor Grande constructs teaching as the link between public education and the imperatives of democracy.
Michael James situates his pedagogy within a theoretical paradigm that is materialist and democratic. He believes the study of schooling and education necessitates understanding the construction of power, not just within capitalist relations, but as an alternative to those arrangements. He teaches courses in the Foundations of Education, Critical Math and Science Education, and seminars in Critical Pedagogy as well as Education and The Revolutionary Project in Latin America.
John Madura's research focuses on interpersonal perception and dyadic relationships in educational settings.
Dana Wright's research and teaching interests include curriculum theory and design, sociocultural theories of learning and participatory action research (PAR) with young people. Conducting research in high schools, middle schools and community-based organizations, she investigates elements of the curriculum and learning settings that limit or promote engaged learning.
American studies, education
A: I wanted to study elementary education and majored in American Studies because I am interested in race and ethnicity. Discussions in class centered on inequality and were stimulated by students from many disciplines. Everyone contributed something different to the dialogue.
A: The program reinforced my ideas about justice and equality and broadened my awareness. I am very interested in urban education and English language learners, so the New London community has been a great place to learn.
A: I took a semester off to work in Honduras at a bilingual elementary school, which gave me an entirely different context in which to view education and Latin American immigration.
A: In 2013 I returned from three years as a principal in Honduras, which was an amazing experience (and huge challenge!). I now teach kindergarten at the Regional Multicultural Magnet School in New London. Within five years I plan to enter graduate school so I can go back to administration or become a professor of education.