Lisa Ann Williamson

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Lisa Ann Williamson is associate editor at Teaching Tolerance. Before coming to SPLC, she worked as a multimedia journalist. Her jobs at newspapers in Iowa, Michigan and New York included covering crime, education, theater and religion stories. Williamson also taught college courses in journalism, literature and interpersonal communication. She graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University with a major in theater and earned her masters at the University of Iowa.


Pages authored by Lisa Ann Williamson

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The Watsons Go to Birmingham…and Montgomery The first time Tonya Lewis Lee read The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963, she fell in love with the book’s family dynamic, humor and vibrant characters...
Suspension Reform Keeps Students in School For years, students in Mobile, Ala., endured school climates in which they were regularly suspended for such minor infractions as tardiness, talking...
Challenge Self-Segregation with Mix It Up The news is sad but, unfortunately, not shocking. Social scientists at the University of Michigan have determined that students in larger schools...
Celebrate ‘Letter From Birmingham Jail’ Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke powerful words. Words that continue to inspire thousands of people around the world as they work toward equality....
TT Community Has Great Span, Wants to Help Kathy Collier-Paul wanted to help Khadija, her brown-eyed, black-haired Muslim student, who didn’t feel she fit among the other primarily blond-...
Dr. King Opened Doors for Historic Presidency A couple years ago, my then 3-year-old daughter announced her intentions to draw a picture for President Barack Obama. “Because he’s my brother,” she...
Beware the Google App Designed for Laughs Social media platforms have great potential to build community, support just causes and call attention to inequity. They can also be used to...
The Road to Disaster Recovery Editor’s Note: Teaching Tolerance collaborated with The Learning Network and The New York Times for news accounts and ideas for lessons and...
Don’t Let Malala Yousafzai’s Voice Be Silenced Few of us really ever have to answer the question, “What am I willing to risk my life for.” Malala Yousafzai, 11, did answer. She decided to risk...
Gotcha Day Celebrates Becoming a Family Each March 7, Stephanie and her husband John will invite immediate family members to the house to celebrate their son, Alexander, now 3. And every...
Advice for First-Year Teachers Educators are natural cheerleaders, fierce protectors, and they rally when needed. That’s why we turned to the Teaching Tolerance community of...
Can Connected Educator Tackle Technology Equity? It’s undeniable. Technology is in the classroom in new and instructive ways. Flipped classrooms and interactive instruction videos created by...
What Sally Ride and Amelia Earhart Taught Us This week reminded us of two pioneering women in aviation. The nation mourned the death of Sally Ride, the first American woman in space. At the same...
Inspiration Knows No Gender When the Dallas Texas Public Schools District decided to show its fifth-graders Red Tails, an action-adventure film based on the Tuskegee pilots...
Students Protest Alabama’s Immigration Law For more than 20 years, Teaching Tolerance, based in Montgomery, Ala., has worked to help educators embrace the diverse classroom. We strive toward...
Montgomery Mixes It Up with Bingo It was more than just a change of scenery for Cole Archer. Today, he moved from his usual center lunch table to the front of the lunchroom to sit...
Laconia Students Mix It Up! Raige Hollis always liked the idea of talking to classmates. In fact, he says he's "friends with everybody." So when his high school announced plans...
A Modern Day Freedom Ride for Education Justice Rose Mary Gilliam just wants to speak her peace and find enlightenment. The 18-year-old New Orleans resident has been a volunteer in the public...
‘Princess Boys’ and Preempting Stereotypes As part of our bedtime routine, I was excited to share a new book with my 4-year-old daughter. My Princess Boy by Cheryl Kilodavis would be our story...
'It Could Be a Wonderful World' As part of the kick-off to the Southern Poverty Law Center's 40th anniversary festivities, second grade students from Notre Dame Elementary in...
What Not to Teach Third Graders This news story out of Duluth, Ga. yesterday caught our attention. It spotlights a homework assignment given to third-graders at a Gwinnett County...
Friend and Activist Nick LaTour Dies Singer, actor and activist Nick LaTour died Monday. To many children in Alabama and across the country, LaTour was a consummate storyteller who was...
Getting More Black Men into the Classroom Walter Sherrill made chemistry cool. He was the sort of refined man who seemed to glide across a room. His voice never rose above a quiet tone, and...
Looking Back at Civil Rights—and Looking Ahead Like the more than 22,000 students who visit the Civil Rights Memorial Center each year, Brittney Johnson loved the fountain. The 10-year-old...
Plan to Grade Parents Flunks Out Florida representative Kelli Stargel has proposed a bill requiring the state’s teachers to grade parents of children aged kindergarten to third grade...
Showing Our Best on MLK Day In classrooms all over the country, posters hang on walls bearing the face of Martin Luther King, Jr. Libraries put out displays of books about his...
The Top 5 Diversity Stories of 2010 This is a busy week at most schools, with teachers and students returning from the holidays. But before everyone gets focused on what lies ahead, let...
Sending ‘That’s so gay’ on Vacation – Permanently In the fourth grade, my teacher, Mrs. King, designed an exercise that banned “good” as an adjective from the classroom. No longer could we respond...
Balancing the Holidays in Your Classroom Each year at this time, teachers are faced with a dilemma: How to balance the holidays to create the most inclusive environment? As Hanukkah comes...
Lasting Lessons from the Montgomery Bus Boycott The time had come. It was Dec. 1, 1955, when Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on the Montgomery public bus. This act led...
Lessons Show Plight of Immigrants Who Feed Us Alma wanted to put milk in her children’s bottles. In her native Mexico, she could only afford to fill them with coffee. Like many recent immigrants...
Do You Teach About Social Justice? Share With Us! For Judy Dodge Cummings, social justice teaching takes students through the lyrics of American folk songs. She uses antique tunes such as Hard Times...
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Fostering Allies Illustration by Anna & Elena Balbusso Akeema Lottman was about to enroll in her fourth high school in four years. It was supposed to be her...
No School Like Freedom School “You are the hope of the future.” That’s the message Marian Wright Edelman, executive director of the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF), gave more than 1...
Yoga in Public Schools Too often, learning in Chelsea A. Jackson’s classroom was a struggle with cheerless chaos. Her 3rd graders at the Title I school in Atlanta struggled...
Against the Current Abena Osei was on track to attend law school after earning her degree in political science and psychology from Southern Methodist University. The...