Supporting Students in Synthesizing Research to Construct Conceptual Understanding: A School-to-Prison pipeline concept-mapping lesson
Keywords:School-to-Prison Pipeline, Constructivism, Concept Mapping, College Courses
The tool described in this paper supports students in synthesizing findings from various studies in order to understand a complex concept. The instructor designs an inquiry question that drives students’ exploration of the central concept. Students read very brief summaries of a number of studies and then physically group and organize the summaries, creating a concept map that illustrates the relationships between various components of the concept. Next, Students’ understanding is refined as they articulate their answers to the inquiry question to the whole class and the instructor provides formal instruction on the concept. Finally, the concept is applied to new cases and the instructor provides additional resources for students to pursue. In this process, students emulate the type of rigorous intellectual work that scholars do in a literature review. However, that thinking work is made more manageable and accessible by providing a high level of structure and condensing research findings into brief summaries. This enables students to take an active role in constructing conceptual understanding. This paper explains how the author applies it to teach about the school-to-prison pipeline in a classroom management unit of a teacher education course, but it can be applied to complex concepts from any discipline.
AAC&U. (n.d.). Essential Learning Outcomes. https://www.aacu.org/essential-learning-outcomes
AAPF. (n.d.). Niya Kenny. https://aapf.org/niya-kenny
ACLU. (2016). Niya Arrested for Challenging Police Abuse in School. https://www.aclu.org/video/niya-arrested-challenging-police-abuse-school
ACLU. (2008). Locating the School to Prison Pipeline. https://www.aclu.org/files/images/asset_upload_file966_35553.pdf
ACLU. (n.d.). Race and Inequality in Education: School-to-Prison Pipeline. https://www.aclu.org/issues/racial-justice/race-and-inequality-education/school-prison-pipeline
Blad, E. (2017, January 24). She Recorded Her Classmate's Arrest, Then Got Arrested, Too. Education Week. https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2017/01/25/she-recorded-her-classmates-arrest-then-got.html
Bybee, R. W., & Landes, N. M. (1990). Science for life & living: An elementary school science program from biological sciences curriculum study. The American Biology Teacher, 52(2), 92-98.
Civil Rights Project. (n.d.). School-to-Prison Pipeline. https://www.civilrightsproject.ucla.edu/resources/projects/center-for-civil-rights-remedies/school-to-prison-folder
González, T. (2015). Socializing Schools: Addressing Racial Disparities in Discipline Through Restorative Justice. In Daniel J. Losen (Ed.). Closing the School Discipline Gap: Equitable remedies for excessive exclusion. Pp. 151-165.
Harbin, M. B., Thurber, A., & Bandy, J. (2019). Teaching Race, Racism, and Racial Justice: Pedagogical Principles and Classroom Strategies for Course Instructors. Race and Pedagogy Journal: Teaching and Learning for Justice, 4(1), 1.
Jackson, J., Beaudry, A. & St. John, P. (2015). Black Lives Matter: The Schott 50 State Report on Public Education and Black Males. http://blackboysreport.org/
Jupp, J. C., Leckie, A., Cabrera, N., & Utt, J. (2019). Race-evasive White Teacher Identity Studies 1990-2015: What can we learn from 25 years of research? Teachers College Record, 121(2), 1-58.
Myer, L. & Finnigan, K. (2018). Using Data to Guide Difficult Conversations around Structural Racism. Voices in Urban Education, 48, 38-45.
Prison Policy Initiative. (n.d.). Sstate Profiles. https://www.prisonpolicy.org/profiles/
Richardson, V. (1997). Constructivist Teaching and Teacher Education: Theory and practice. In Richardson, V. (Ed.). Constructivist teacher education: Building new understandings. RoutledgeFalmer: Philadelphia PA. pp. 3-14.
Shalaby, C. (2017). Troublemakers: Lessons in freedom from young children at school. The New Press.
Sue, D. W. (2016). Race talk and the conspiracy of silence: Understanding and facilitating difficult dialogues on race. Wiley: Hoboken, NJ.
Webber-Ndour, K. & Losen, D. (2015) Personal Perspectives on School Discipline Issues and Remedies. In Daniel J. Losen (Ed.). Closing the School Discipline Gap: Equitable remedies for excessive exclusion. Pp. 237-240.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others non-commercial use of the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).