Through stories from kindergarten to sixth grade classrooms where students and teachers have attempted to put a critical edge on their teaching, this book shows critical literacy in action across the curriculum. Readers see students and teachers together using critical literacy discourse to frame conversations in ways that engage students in examining the meaning of the texts they read and acting on local and global social issues that emerge. Drawing on multiple perspectives such as cross-curricular explorations, multimedia, and child-centered inquiry pedagogies, the text features a theoretical toolkit; demonstrations from across the content areas including art, music, and media literacy; integration of technology; and attention to how critical literacy can inform decisions about standards and assessment. Annotated booklists, examples of students’ work, Reflection Questions, Try This (practical classroom strategies), and Resource Boxes can be used to encourage and support engaging in critical literacy work in different areas of the curriculum.
My latest book project - co-edited with
Susi Long and Mariana Souto-Manning.
10th Anniversary Edition
- New section: "Getting Beyond Prescriptive Curricula, the Mandated Curriculum, and Core Standards"
- New feature: "Critical Reflections and Pedagogical Suggestions" at the end of the demonstration chaptesr
- New Appendices: "Resources for Negotiating Critical Literacies" and "Alternate Possibilities for Conducting an Audit Trail"
- Companion Website: narratives of ways in which the audit trail has been used as a tool for teaching and learning; resources on critical literacy including links to other websites and blogs; podcast focused on critical literacy and young children
"Through vibrant, memorable, and surprising examples of very young children grappling with very real social issues, Vivian Vasquez has transformed critical literacy in early childhood education." Karen Wohlwend, Indiana University-Bloomington
"These amazing accounts, supplemented with advice for implementing critical literacy practices with young children, will inspire many teachers to explore the potential of their students’ voices and the power of young children to work for change in their schools and communities." Catherine Compton-Lilly, University of Wisconsin Madison
"Too often teachers of young children doubt their students’ capabilities for engaging in deeply analytical understandings of a variety of texts, but Vasquez’ book provides sound critical theory and an abundance of practical examples of young children asking sophisticated questions about the texts of their lives, from McDonald’s to TV to their own school community. After reading this text, never more will these teachers have doubts."
Stephanie A. Flores-Koulish, Loyola University MD
"We desperately need critical literacy approaches at all levels of schooling, and especially at the pre-school level. Negotiating Critical Literacies with Young Children is a brilliant, essential, uplifting, and inspiring book nee3ded more now than ever."
Doug Morris, Eastern New Mexico University
"The critical and creative ways of being in Vivian’s preschool classroom should be a model of living and learning for all of us. This is education at its best – and anyone involved in early childhood initiatives or policy-making that will impact the lives of children and their teachers should take time to read this before putting mandates in place."
Stephanie Jones, University of Georgia
"Dr. Vasquez is one of the most reflective and committed scholars in the field of critical literacy, social justice and early childhood education. She is a pioneer in developing and sharing how to develop critical classroom practices. In this revised edition she shows one more time her ability to develop accessible and sophisticated ideas to educators."
Carmen L. Medina, Indiana University
"A concise and practical book that opens up doors for pedagogical possibilities in literacy classrooms. Any educator interested in building students’ critical literacy skills can draw on Vasquez’s range of examples – and key moments in the learning process through an audit trail!" Korina Jocson, Washington University in St. Louis
"Vivian Vasquez’s groundbreaking work challenges educators to think more expansively about young children’s critical inquiries. It is essential reading for early childhood literacy teachers and scholars." María Paula Ghiso, Teachers College, Columbia University
"Vasquez eloquently describes how teaching young children to read is more than a progression of reading skills. By taking readers through the audit trails she illustrates how the ‘teaching of reading’ cannot be isolated from the ‘teaching of critical thinking.’ This book is a cornerstone book for educators who work with young children."
Bobbie Kabuto, Queens College, City University of New York