Stories of the Courage to Teach: Honoring the Teacher's Heart
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More About This Title Stories of the Courage to Teach: Honoring the Teacher's Heart


Sam M. Intrator, assistant professor of education and child study at Smith College, is the son of two public school teachers. For many years, he was a public high school teacher in Brooklyn, New York, Vermont, and California.



Foreword: Listening to Teachers (Parker J. Palmer).

Introduction: Honoring the Teacher?s Heart (Sam M. Intrator).

PART I: Turning Inward: Sustaining Our Own Hearts.

Speaking from the Heart (Amy Symons).

This Is Where Teaching Gets Real (Jim Burke).

Teaching Had Become an Ordinary Job (John Rockne).

An Experiment with Truth: One Teacher?s Path (Leslie Young).

Doing Small Things with Great Love (Mary Alice Scott).

Despair and Love in Teaching (Daniel P. Liston).

Sam Scheer: Coming to Terms with a Lifetime of Teaching (Rosetta Marantz Cohen).

Adult Conversations About Unasked Questions: Teaching for Educational Justice (Sonia Nieto and Stephen Gordon).

PART II: Reaching Out: Forging Relationships That Sustain Our Hearts.

The Meaning of Life Assignment (Robert Kunzman).

Reclaiming Identity: Sharing a Teacher?s Truth (Kirstin Tonningsen).

Of Aliens and Space (Elizabeth Keats Flores).

You?re the One I Expected to Meet (Mary Rose O?Reilley).

Arriving Where I Started: Rediscovering the Newness (Susan Etheredge).

Feeling, Thinking, and Acting for Change (Catalina Rios).

Finding the Courage to Be Seventeen in Forty-Four-Year-Old Skin (Lori Fulton).

Adversity as Ally (Rachael Kessler).

PART III: Making Change: Reforms That Honor the Teacher?s Heart.

So Sweet It Made Me Jingled: Offering My Own Truth Within the System (Clayton Stromberger).

The Risk of Teaching and Learning Differently (Katherine Kennedy).

Lift Every Voice (Chip Wood).

Teaching Excellence and the Inner Life of a Faculty (Robert G. Kraft).

Journey into the Wilderness: A Teacher-Researcher Group?s Retreat (Kelly Chandler-Olcott).

Teachers-to-Be Learning from Students-Who-Are: Reconfiguring Undergraduate Teacher Preparation (Alison Cook-Sather).

Honor the People; It?s the Leader?s Work (David Hagstrom).

From Charity to Justice: Toward a Theology of Urban School Reform (Linda C. Powell).

Toward a Leadership of Peace for the Twenty-First-Century Academy (Diana Chapman Walsh).

PART IV: Rejuvenating Heart: The Courage to Teach Program.

Courage to Teach: A Retreat Program of Personal and Professional Renewal for Educators (Marcy Jackson and Rick Jackson).

Afterword: What I Heard Them Say (Parker J. Palmer).

Resources That Honor and Sustain the Teacher?s Heart (Compiled by Helen Lee).

The Editor.

About the Courage to Teach Program.



"...a high-quality work..." (Human Given, Summer 2002)"Stories of the Courage to Teach powerfully reminds us that this nation's schools and colleges are blessed with many good teachers and that we must be willing to respect, support, and deeply listen to them. It also indicates that teachers must also learn to listen to themselves. Our history books are filled with examples of the efforts of committed education employees who helped to make this country what it is today. Stories of the Courage to Teach challenges today's teachers to see themselves not only as school employees, dedicated to serving children, but as leaders in their schools and communities." --Bob Chase, president, National Education Association

"Articulate teachers recounting with great candor and imagination just how beautiful their calling is, also how challenging, depleting, and lonely it can be, and what to do about it. This outstanding and highly inspiring book offers cool, clear, and nourishing water from the wellspring of the heart, where all teaching originates, and will serve as both a reminder and guide for teachers at all levels to return over and over to the source and nourish what is deepest and best in themselves as they nourish what is deepest and best in their students and their schools." --Jon Kabat-Zinn, professor of medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, author of Wherever You Go, There You Are and coauthor of Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting

"Finally, a book for, by, and about REAL teachers. A book that reveals the pain as well as the joy, the shadow as well as the light. A book that is not another how-to cookbook, but a book that creates hope and promise and inspiration through its truth-telling." --Dr. Sally Z. Hare, Singleton Professor of Education, Coastal Carolina University

"It is the mark of every Golden Age that children are placed at the center of society and teaching is considered the most important profession. By this standard, we in the United States have a very long way to go. If we ever succeed in this cultural transformation, few will have contributed more than Parker Palmer." --Peter M. Senge, author, The Fifth Discipline and Schools That Learn

"The teachers' stories herein-told in frequently elegant prose and with palpable passion-serve to remind us of two things: the remarkable gifts present in our public school educators, and what constitutes the heart of true teaching. Intrator's ability to evoke their voices as well as to deeply hear them has created an unforgettable gift to the profession and to those who have been led to believe that education is nothing more than yet another business enterprise." --Marianne Novak Houston, public school teacher with forty years of classroom teaching experience and recipient of the Milken Educator Award

"A book for troubled times in teaching. This powerful and moving collection of essays argues that we must join the values of the heart if teaching is to transcend the punishing pressures, of one-size-fits-all juggernaut of school-reform mania. A must-read for teacher educators, principals, and school board members!" --Jay Casbon, dean, Graduate School of Education, Lewis & Clark College

"[This book] is a must-read for educators who often feel depleted from the demands of teaching and isolated from colleagues. Rediscover your purpose and passion for making a difference in the lives of children through stories of real people who teach with courage and integrity. There is something essentially human in these pages that speaks to the hearts of teachers who are disillusioned, depleted, and discouraged. You simply must reconnect with your identity, your true self, that spiritual being who felt called to teach children. It is powerful because it is the truth, spoken from the hearts of teachers who share a common experience." --Paula Naegle, Nevada Teacher of the Year

"Teacher voices must be heard, and teacher wisdom about the needs of children must be heeded. It has always been from the teachers who speak from their hearts that we find the best solutions to improving our schools. Our job as policymakers is to listen." --James B. Hunt, Jr., governor of North Carolina for four terms

"The core relationship in learning is between the student and the teacher. [This] book reminds us just how vital the forces of heart and spirit are to teaching and learning." --Wendy D. Puriefoy, president, Public Education Network