English teacher John Creger has been learning from sophomores at American High School in Fremont CA since 1988. In his publications and presentations since 1998, John communicates to educators what his sophomores’ continuing response to his Personal Creed Project teaches him about a deeper kind of literacy. In 2015, John launched Thriving at the Core Presentations to share his developing approach with colleagues in their own districts. He earned a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley, and an M.A. from San Francisco State University, both in English. In recognition of the Personal Creed Project, the National Council of Teachers of English and the National Writing Project presented John the James Moffett Memorial Award for Teacher Research.
Course No. ED474d, ED574d
Students who respond to us the least might actually need us the most. This course introduces an approach that prepares teachers to counter the harm inflicted when students internalize the negative stereotypes society aims at black, brown, native and other groups of marginalized students. In The Innocent Classroom, the author of our course text Alexs Pate reveals how internalized stereotypes create a sense of unwarranted guilt in these students that adversely affects their engagement in learning. This course is designed to help teachers create individual relationships that can guide our hard-to-reach and marginalized students to shed this sense of guilt, restore their innocence, and re-engage in learning.
Course No. ED471w, ED571w
Does the time students spend in your classroom help them gain a deeper sense of who they are? Our focus on standards and tests crowds out students' self-discovery at a time when young people more than ever need to know what they stand for and be ready to act for the greater good. This course prepares elementary, intermediate and secondary language arts teachers to guide their students to reflect on their lives to date, discover what they value, and decide how they wish to make a difference in the world.
Building on research into the developmental needs of young people, and my own classroom research on deepening the experience of learning, you'll learn ways to design your students' self-discovery into the reading, writing and conversation strands of your course. This self-discovery culminates for many students in a life-changing classroom rite-of-passage called The Personal Creed Project.