Critcal Literacy in the Face of a Mandated Curriculum: Can Children Read Beyond the Text? Open Access
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Critical Literacy in the Face of a Mandated Curriculum: Can Children Read Beyond the Text? This study is a qualitative case study in which three case studies took place. One case study focused on documenting and describing the teacher's experiences in implementing a critical literacy approach in her classroom while staying with-in the confines of her mandated curriculum materials. The second case study focused on the students' responses and academic growth in a critical literacy environment. The third case study drew from both case studies to find relational and corresponding data that tie together the research questions. Study data included student work samples, journal entries, observations and teacher narratives. Data were collected over a three month period. The purpose of this study was to determine whether or not a teacher could implement a critical literacy program while using materials predetermined by her school district. Additionally, this study focused on how the students would respond to learning critical literacy, how the teacher would negotiate between implementing a set curriculum and critical literacy and how her own experiences have impacted her teaching practices. This study found a direct relationship between the teacher's experiences and her instructional practices. Often past experiences affected her decisions or expectations of what or how she anticipated her students to respond. Also, this study found that the students in this study were able to learn a critical literacy approach to reading and writing and were able to question text, problematize situations, critique forms of social justice/ injustice and take social action.