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    Making “it” matter: developing African-American girls and young women’s mathematics and science identities through informal STEM learning
    (Springer, 2022-03) Morton, Crystal; Smith-Mutegi, Demetrice
    This article describes a summer enrichment science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) camp for African-American girls and young women aimed at addressing mathematical and science self-efficacy and reinforcing the importance and usefulness of mathematics and science with a socially transformative curriculum. The research questions guiding this study are (1) How do African-American girl participants describe their experiences in Girls STEM Institute (GSI)? and (2) How does the STEM program experience affect their mathematics and science self-efficacy and valuing of mathematics and science? The data, which included journal entries and interviews, were collected and analyzed from four participants and indicated that participating in the Girls STEM Institute led to improved mathematics and science self-efficacy and increased perceptions of the value of science and math knowledge.
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    Black Girls and Mathematics Learning
    (Oxford, 2020) Morton, Crystal; Tate McMillan, Danielle; Harrison-Jones, Winterbourne
    Though the formal and informal mathematics learning experiences of Black girls are gaining more visibility in the literature, there is still a paucity of research around Black girls’ mathematics learning experiences. Black girls face unique challenges as learners in K–12 educational spaces because of their marginalized racial and gender identities. The interplay of race and racism unfolds in complex ways in Black girls’ learning experiences. This interplay hinders their development as mathematics learners and limits their access to transformative learning. As early as elementary school, Black girls are labeled as having limited mathematics knowledge and are often disproportionately placed in “lower level classrooms” devoid of any rigorous and transformative learning experiences. Teachers spend more time socially correcting Black girls rather than building on their brilliance. Even though Black girls value mathematics more and have higher confidence in mathematics than their White counterparts, they are still held to lower expectations by their teachers and are less likely to complete an advanced mathematics course. Nationally and globally, mathematics serves as an academic gatekeeper into every avenue of the labor market and higher education opportunities. Thus, the lack of opportunities Black girls have to engage in rigorous and transformative mathematics potentially locks them out of higher education opportunities and STEM-based careers. The mathematics learning experiences of Black girls move beyond challenges in K–12 spaces to limiting life choices and individual and community progress. To improve the formal and informal mathematics learning experiences of Black girls, we must understand their unique learning experiences more fully.
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    Girls Stem Institute: Transforming and Empowering Black Girls in Mathematics Through Stem
    (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, 2018) Morton, Crystal; Smith-Mutegi, Demetrice
    With the growing interest in STEM at both the national and international level, as well as the persistence in racial disparities in educational achievement, it is crucial that educators provide learning experiences that foster the positive development of Black females’ mathematics and science identities. This chapter will describe Girls STEM Institute (GSI), a program designed to support the positive development of Black females as learners and doers of mathematics and science. GSI provides learners who identify as Black and female an opportunity to develop an understanding of mathematics and other STEM concepts in a meaningful and culturally grounded out-of-school context. Within GSI’s rich, rigorous, relevant, and supportive environment, young ladies have the freedom to grow interpersonally and intellectually and are empowered to use STEM as a tool for personal and social change.
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    Challenging minds: Enhancing the mathematical learning of African American students through games
    (Information Age Publishing, 2012) Morton, Crystal; Yow, Jan A.; Cook, Daniela Ann
    Minority Access to Revolutionary Instructional Extensions (MATRIX) is a two-part pilot project that couples parent engagement and supplemental mathematics instruction. The MATRIX supplemental mathematics curriculum is built around six games designed to foster the mathematical development of elementary students. This article describes the MATRIX mathematics curriculum and provides findings related to the project’s impact on African American students’ number sense and attitudes towards mathematics.
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    African Americans and Mathematics Outcomes on National Assessment of Educational Progress: Parental and Individual Influences
    (Springer, 2013-01) Noble, Richard, III; Hill Morton, Crystal
    This study investigated within group differences between African American female and male students who participated in the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress mathematics assessment. Using results from participating states, we compare average scale scores of African American students based on home regulatory environment and interest in mathematics. Results indicated that African American male students who discussed studies 2–3 times a week scored higher than African American female students who discussed studies every day. In three states (Connecticut, Florida, and New Jersey), African American males who never or hardly ever discussed studies at home scored higher than African American males who never or hardly ever discussed studies at home in the state of Arkansas. In two states (Florida and New Jersey), African American males who discussed studies every few weeks scored higher than African American males who discussed studies every few weeks in Arkansas. In four states (Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, and New Jersey), the overall scale scores of African American males was higher than those of African American males in Arkansas. As a result of the findings, we present practical implications for parents of African American students.
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    Effects of Language on Children’s Understanding of Mathematics
    (ICRSME, 2022) Wilkerson, Trena L.; Mistretta, Regina M.; Adcock, Justin; Borgioli Yoder, Gina; Johnston, Elisabeth; Bu, Lingguo; Nugent, Patricia M.; Booher, Loi; School of Education
    Teacher educators have a moral and civic obligation to examine ways in which language and mathematics are connected and supported in teaching and learning mathematics. It is essential to examine the roles and influence of family, parents, community, teachers, administration, and teacher educators as they collaborate to support learners. Their role should be considered in preparing and supporting teachers to develop curriculum, plan instruction, and implement strategies that support students’ development of language in the mathematics classroom. An examination of the literature regarding the effects of language on children’s understanding of mathematics was conducted around six areas: 1) impact of language on understanding and meaning making; 2) symbols, expressions and language connections; 3) effects of teachers’ listening orientation; 4) language development, play and family influences; 5) implications for multilingual learners; and 6) technology and digital media. Implications for teacher education and future research are presented. We offer readers a potential framework to consider for guiding teacher educators’ practices and future research efforts. In so doing, we display various connections and interplays between language and children’s mathematical meaning making and understanding.
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    Social and Racial Justice in Teacher Education: An Africana Womanist Mandate
    (Cambridge, 2022-08-17) Kazembe, Lasana D.; Jackson, Tambra O.; School of Education
    This essay discusses the concept of social and racial justice in teacher education in tandem with core tenets drawn from Hudson-Weems’ theorizing on Africana Womanism: spirituality, respect for elders, family centeredness, mothering. As Africana people continue to grapple with reverberating crises within education, it is increasingly clear that we need to embrace and articulate a theoretical lens, philosophical stance, and praxis rooted in Africana perspectives and in the centrality of our culture in order to move us toward mental and cultural liberation. Aside from parents, educators represent the largest group of socializing agents who directly and consistently impact the lives of children and youth. Thus, if Black educators operate from a colonized ontology and epistemology, then Black children are likely to be seen as empty vessels in need of fixing. In order for our social and racial justice project to flourish, it is critical that we engage in a constant shedding (i.e. unlearning/relearning) of non-Africana knowledge hierarchies while simultaneously re-orientating and re-rooting ourselves in liberating paradigms and practices drawn from Africana culture and traditions of educational excellence. The result is a restorative approach to teacher education, informed by the liberatory theoretical vision and generative possibilities of Africana Womanism.
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    The Attack on Critical Race Theory and Higher Education: A Legal Analysis of the Impact of State Action on Faculty Free Speech
    (Peter Lang, 2022) Iftikar, Jon S.; Nguyễn, David Hòa Khoa; Byers, Tevin; School of Education
    In this article, the authors review proposed and passed state legislation that aim to ban Critical Race Theory and other social justice content from public higher education institutions. Using the law as the theoretical framework and legal analysis as the methodology, the authors examine these state actions, focusing on implications for higher education faculty speech and academic freedom. The authors discuss the history and current state of the law in the areas of free speech and academic freedom, including U.S. Supreme Court and other federal courts of appeal cases on how free speech in scholarship and teaching have been viewed. They also briefly discuss the legislation that states have proposed or passed which ban Critical Race Theory in higher education institutions, and end by discussing the implications such bans have on faculty free speech in scholarship and teaching. Overall, the authors detail the ways that these laws have a chilling and limiting effect on faculty speech, which in turn, have important consequences for students, institutions, and society as well.
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    Coaches Need Coaches: Shadow Coaching as Systematic Support for Coach Professional Learning
    (2021-04) Tyra, Serena; Sherman, Brandon; Teemat, Annela; School of Education