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Gender Equity in Education Commons

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Arts and Humanities

University of Nebraska - Lincoln

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At Risk In The Writing Classroom: Negotiating A Lesbian Teacher Identity, Irene G. Meaker May 1999

At Risk In The Writing Classroom: Negotiating A Lesbian Teacher Identity, Irene G. Meaker

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research: Department of English

"Education is a fearful enterprise," says teacher and philosopher, Parker Palmer. Student-centered/ processoriented pedagogy asks teachers to step out from behind the relative safety of the teacher mask and to enter the risky arena of learning. For the writing teacher, a special challenge is to help students negotiate the risks inherent in the act of writing and in sharing writing with the "Other."

To prevent fears from dominating our students, teachers must model risk-taking and risk negotiation. In my own teaching, my fears around students' reactions to learning my sexual identity meant that I more often reinforced fears than dispelled ...