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Joanelle Morales, PhD, believes good teachers encourage students to want to learn and to ultimately pursue useful knowledge (Dewey, 1897) that will help them become better citizens of society and become successful in their adult lives. This knowledge is pragmatic and socially constructed, but will be reconstructed for different practical problems in specific contexts. To prepare students for the future, good educators teach students to be critical thinkers and facilitate the process of independent thinking.

​Drawing from Freire’s (1970) critical consciousness, Morales encourage students to develop their understandings in terms of their own experiences by providing prompts and questions that foster and further their wonderings.

Morales is interested in Narrative Inquiry and other Qualitative Research methodologies, Counterstorytelling, Critical Race Consciousness and English Education curriculum. She's also interested in cooking and eating exotic foods, wandering and wondering, and creating.

Morales believes good teaching is collaborative and cooperative. Under socio-cultural learning theory (Vygotsky, 1978), students engage in meaning within social and cultural communities. To encourage everyone to participate, good teachers are sensitive, inclusive and are aware of the funds of knowledge (Moll, Amanti, Neff, & Gonzalez, 1992) students bring to the table. With that in mind, a safe and comfortable learning environment must be established where students learn to empathize and learn from each other.

In Morales's classroom, students learn constructivist learning strategies (Bruner, 1990) by working in small groups to negotiate ideas with peers, participating in whole-class, student-driven discussions like Socratic seminars and other dialogic interactions like jigsaws and peer writing workshops. These strategies expose students to a diverse range of ideas that challenge and/or extend their thinking. With the help of colleagues, learning can become much more meaningful.

Curriculum Vitae