Through the Lens of Social Justice: Using The Change Agent in Adult Education
In an effort to provide a greater number of resources for our tutors, the Adult Tutoring Program has worked to add new materials to the reference section of our tutor library. One newly added title is “Through the Lens of Social Justice: Using the Change Agent in Adult Education.” This book may be used in tandem with the Change Agent, an adult education newsletter, or independently as a reading resource for learners or a guide for cultural competency in addressing social justice issues.
The three chapters explore social justice as it applies to the adult learner, looking to connect the classroom with the larger community to which our learners contribute. Chapter one explores how social justice issues can be addressed through a learner’s literacy goals. The topics available for reference range from life skills materials to personal narratives, to High School Equivalency (HSE) preparation. Both the life skills materials and the personal narratives are structured for easy use in tutoring sessions, enabling these examples to be directly applied to the lesson. Outlines are given for pre- and post-reading activities, encouraging learners to engage in social issues that affect their daily lives. Final support is provided for learners hoping to engage in civic action to better their communities.
Chapter two provides a framework for exploring social justice themes and building an ongoing curriculum around these themes. Topics range from taxes and immigration to the economy and are geared towards learner populations that could benefit from a better understanding of these issues. This chapter is structured as a lesson plan for tutors, but it is meant to contribute to the development of several lessons. This allows tutors and learners to reflect upon the topic’s relevance.
Chapter three rounds out this resource by sharing personal narratives and experiences from seasoned adult educators who have dealt with tough conversations around social justice. They share tips for starting these conversations, answering difficult questions, and ultimately facing social justice issues head-on. Their tales, along with the resources they have shared in earlier chapters, will hopefully encourage and inspire tutors to build these vital conversations into their interactions with learners.