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Biography-Driven Culturally Responsive Teaching

Honoring Race, Ethnicity, and Personal History

Socorro G. Herrera Geneva Gay

224 pages
Teachers College Press

This popular resource has transformed classrooms for thousands of teachers by providing how-to guidance for success with culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) students. It illustrates how to use strategies that recognize and leverage all the cultural and linguistic assets that students bring to their learning.

This new edition situates biography-driven instruction at the intersection of culturally responsive teaching, culturally sustaining pedagogies, and antiracist education. Herrera provides updated vignettes and student work artifacts to reflect the diversity of learners in today’s historically and culturally situated spaces. Teaching strategies, tools, and interactional processes provide practical, proven ways to restructure classrooms for relational equity. Increased attention on each learner’s biopsychosocial history will help educators to cultivate classroom ecologies that nurture and challenge CLD learners to reach their potentials.

With lesson planning and strategy templates, tips for grouping students, teacher reflections, assessment aids, a classroom observation tool, and more features to foster classroom and schoolwide change, this edition shows teachers and administrators how to take the next steps toward critical consciousness and authentic relationships that will accelerate content learning and foster more extensive use and development of language.

Book Features:

  • Lesson planning guide that can be used with any curriculum.
  • Strategy tools and templates to foster engaged learning.
  • Voices of CLD families that highlight benefits of asset-driven practices.
  • Journaling process for critical reflection on assumptions and perspectives.
  • Book study discussion guide to scaffold collaboration and goal setting.
  • Classroom observation tool for coaching, mentoring, and self-assessment.
Author Bio

Socorro G. Herrera is professor of curriculum and instruction at The Kansas State University and executive director of the Center for Intercultural and Multilingual Advocacy (CIMA). Her books include Equity in School–Parent Partnerships, Accelerating Literacy for Diverse Learners, and Crossing the Vocabulary Bridge. She received the 2022 AERA Division K Legacy Award.