Teaching Tolerance Magazine

Issue 35, Spring 2009

Cover art by Ana Juan

Teaching in the Downturn 

The Spring 2009 issue speaks from the intersection of hope and hardship, exploring the teachable moments inherent in Barack Obama’s historic election, as well as the economic crisis.

Stories on students’ homophobia, lonely English language learners and bullying illustrate the work left to do in promoting equity in schools and beyond, even in the wake of civil rights milestones.

This issue also explores how economic inequality impacts the classroom, offering advice for teachers helping students cope. From Chicago to rural West Virginia, we offer a glimpse into students’ lives and the quest to transcend stereotypes associated with social class.

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21 Seconds to Teach Humanity

Her lessons met the standards, but her students were pummeling each other in the restroom between classes. How one teacher found a way to reach the benchmarks that really matter.
Lisa Weinbaum
Illustration by Christina Ung

Lonely Language Learners?

Why is that English language learner sitting in the back of the classroom and not speaking up? Maybe she just needs a friend. Here's what some schools are doing to make sure their ELL students become part of the school community.
Carrie Kilman
Illustration by Ken Orvidas

Flipping the Script on Bias and Bullies

What do actors have in common with bigots, bullies and their victims? They play the same script over and over. Social justice theater can teach your students to take the story into their own hands.
Scott Hewitt
Illustration by Gilbert Ford

Crossing the Gap

Students from both sides of Chicago's school-funding divide are coming together to demand equality. In the process, they're crossing barriers of race and social class.
Tim Lockette
Photography by Roark Johnson

Walkout in Crystal City

When students take action, they create change that extends far beyond the classroom. A former teacher from Crystal City, Tex., remembers the student walkout that helped launch the Latino civil rights movement 40 years ago.
Greg Barrios

How School Taught Me I Was Poor

Third grade was a bad year. Third grade was the year I learned in school that I was poor.
Jeff Sapp
Illustration by Ellen Weinstein



Hesitation and Hope

The 2008 election showed us that true progress in the struggle for equality is possible. Yet there is still much work to be done.
Jennifer Holladay
Story Corner

Freedom Riders

An angry mob beat the Freedom Riders when they arrived in Montgomery. How do you explain that to second-graders?
Rhonda Brownstein