New England Reading Association Journal

Peer-reviewed journal provides articles, interviews, essays, and research reports of interest to educators. Issues investigated include literacy, classroom practice, and assessment.

Articles from Vol. 43, No. 2, 2007

Asking the Hard Questions: Giving Children's Literature a Critical Reading
Asking the Hard Questions: Giving Children's Literature a Critical ReadingCritical literacy recognizes language as a primary force for social action. The urgency of this recognition has increased since Freire's initial identification of the theory and...
Critical Literacies: Stepping beyond the NCLB Act
We must prepare young people for living in a world of powerful images, words and sounds. UNESCO, (1982)In 1996, almost ten years ago, in her book Literacy at the Crossroads, Routman warns,Today, unreasonable voices outside our profession are clamoring...
Critical Literacy and Everyday Life
What is critical literacy?Think about driving on the highway. Throughout the trip, we pass many federal texts designed to regulate our driving, positioning us as citizens who live in a society of laws. The signs stand for the laws. The standardization...
Critical Literacy as a Tool for Preparing Prospective Educators for Teaching in a Multicultural World
The demographic data of American education exhibit two very different trends in the make up of its two most significant populations: the students and the teachers. America's student population is becoming increasingly more diverse. Fry (2007) reports...
Critical Literacy, Classroom Practice, and Everyday Lives
It has been my privilege to edit this issue of NERAJ which focuses on critical literacy. Critical literacy addresses issues of language, power, and knowledge, and how all three are interrelated. In an era of scripted curricula, governmental mandates,...
Critical Literacy Practices in Teaching and Learning
Like many literacy teacher educators, in my literacy courses I advocate for critical literacy practices. Whenever I present teachers with different approaches to such practices, I often hear responses such as: "My students do not even know how to speak...
Disrupting the Gaze That Condemns: Applying a Critical Literacy Perspective to Toni Morrison's the Bluest Eye
What is Critical Literacy?Critical pedagogues believe that education should provide all students the opportunity to question, discover and transform their futures. The principles and practices of critical pedagogy are designed to help students become...
Flying with Critical Literacy Wings
In Raymond Briggs' wordless picture book The Snowman, a boy befriends a snowman to explore not only his home, but also the world. Together, they take flight, with the boy on Snowman's back, to soar above cities and towns, safely seeing all from a different...
Perspectives on Critical Literacy: "You Can't Step on Someone Else's Words," Yogurt Cup Experiments, Theme Park Mathematics, and Other Experiences from the Classroom
Perspectives on Critical Literacy: "You can't step on someone else's words," Yogurt Cup Experiments, Theme Park Mathematics, and Other Experiences from the ClassroomWhile the authors of the books in this collection discuss the concepts of critical literacy,...
Pigs, Cinderella and Social Issues
Critical literacy, and the pedagogy that supports this theoretical framework, has been articulated by numerous literacy educators and theorists (Edelsky, 1999b; Fehring & Green, 2001; Freire & Macedo, 1987; Morgan, 1997). Although attempts to...
Support for New Literacies, Cultural Expectations, and Pedagogy: Potential and Features for Classroom Web Sites
There appears to be a widening gap between the literacies our society uses and the literacies our schools teach. Some refer to the literacies that are emerging in our society as "new literacies" meaning those skills readers need to make sense of electronic...
Teacher Resistance to Critical Conversation: Exploring Why Teachers Avoid Difficult Topics in Their Classrooms
As teacher educators we feel a responsibility for helping teachers and children take up important and difficult conversations about world issues. Even with the recent rise in quality and quantity of children's literature, librarians, teachers, and administrators...
The Internet as a Resource for Critical Literacy Learning and Applications
Under the New Literacies Perspective (Leu, Kinzer, Coiro, & Cammack, 2004), the Internet is considered to be one more important technology for literacy, just like a book or a pencil (Leu, Leu, & Coiro, 2004). Therefore it is assumed that just...
Using the Everyday to Engage in Critical Literacy with Young Children
It has been over 14 years since I began exploring what critical literacy could mean in different settings (Albright et. al, 1999, Vasquez, 2003b, 2001a, 2001c, 2000a, 2000b, 1994). In particular my work has focused on young children primarily between...
World War II and Beyond: Middle School Inquiry and Critical Literacy
The purpose of this research was to explore the experiences of adolescents as they began to develop critical literacy skills as part of an inquiry project in an integrated social studies/language arts classroom. Critical literacy, as I define it here,...