I see my role in the classroom as an inseparable extension of my scholar-activist work around issues of social justice. My approach to education as a liberatory practice combines content-area knowledge with rigorous engagements with theory, building on students’ personal experiences, and strengthening students’ abilities to effectively communicate their ideas across fields of knowledge and praxis. I see these as the pillars supporting students in understanding, imagining, and making the world they want to see.
To this end, I am constantly working to develop and incorporate a diverse pedagogical methods to scaffold these pillars of knowledge in meaningful and engaging ways. In practice, this translates to things such as rigorous (but generous) reading, in-class presentations, small-group discussions and writing activities, interactive web-based activities, ad-hoc research exercises, peer feedback, collaborative writing, informal short-form writing assignments, and engagement with organizations and institutions beyond the classroom.
As a geographer, one of my preoccupations is the literal translation of the term geographia, or the writing of the world, both in terms of producing descriptive understandings of the world, and the active practice of inscribing the world I want to see. As a teacher of geography, I help students develop the tools to better understand the world through the concepts of race, space, place, and environment, as both ideological concepts and material processes. This includes the ways in which people unevenly relate to each other and to their environments through spatialized practices of production and consumption, domination and resistance.