Category Reflections

We Gon’ Be Alright: A reflection on Kendrick Lamar’s visit

“Something for me even bigger than mentoring is really listening…When I do that we have a little bit bigger [of a] connection than me being Kendrick Lamar and you being the student. It’s almost like we’re friends because a friend listens.” – Kendrick Lamar at High Tech High School Reflecting on Kendrick Lamar’s visit to […]

Part 2: High School Students Write Essays on Kendrick Lamar’s album, To Pimp A Butterfly

“Over 40 years, we’ve made changes in this country, but did we make a change in the heart of the individual?” – Jalen (9th grade) Since my last post about teaching Kendrick Lamar’s new album, To Pimp A Butterfly (2015) in the high school classroom, many people from around the world, including educators and music fans […]

Why I Dropped Everything And Started Teaching Kendrick Lamar’s New Album

When Kendrick Lamar released his sophomore album, To Pimp A Butterfly (2015), I was in the middle of teaching a unit on Toni Morrison’s novel, The Bluest Eye (1970). My freshmen students were grappling with some big ideas and some really complex language. Framing the unit as an “Anti-Oppression” study, we took special efforts to […]

Race, White Privilege & Fruitvale Station

I had a feeling that Fruitvale Station was going to disturb me, but I felt obligated to see it. The film opens with what appears to be cell-phone video footage of the incident where a young, unarmed Oscar Grant was shot in the back by police at a train station in the Bay Area during […]

Thesis Christ

How far reaching are the effects of our “authoritative” insistence that students should always be searching for conclusions? I wonder if there is anything at all, in my life, that I have come to a complete, definitive, absolute conclusion about. What happens to the development of young learners when we insist an “illusion of mastery”? […]