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Black Teacher Matters

Black Teacher Matters

By Abdel Shakur
Abdel Shakur is a writer and teacher concerned with telling the stories of Black teachers. A Catalyst Chicago Classroom Story Slam winner and 13th year veteran in the classroom, Abdel and his guests reflect on an essential question: Why are Black teachers so important to the lives of children?

What do you think about what you heard? Leave me a message:
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Episode 2: Alexs Pate, Innocence, and Getting to the Good

Black Teacher Matters

Episode 3: Crystal Wilkinson, Making Space, and the Innocence of Black Girls
It's rare that Black girls get a chance at innocence in academic spaces. I tell a story about confronting my own Whiteness to create space for a young woman to engage the questions that really mattered to her.  I also sit down with one of my most influential teachers, Crystal Wilkinson, author of The Birds of Opulence. We talk about the life of a Black teachers and how she creates space for students to take control of their own learning. She also helps me come to terms with some petty nonsense I did to her way back when.  What do you think about what you heard? Leave me a message here:
January 11, 2021
Episode 2: Alexs Pate, Innocence, and Getting to the Good
Way back in my first year of teaching in 2008, I was having standoffs over handshakes, Barack Obama was just the president-elect, and I swear I saw a boy take innocent flight in my class one day. I also sit down with the novelist and education leader, Alexs Pate, to talk about his newest book, The Innocent Classroom: Dismantling Racial Bias to Support Students of Color, his theory of innocence and how it relates to the power of Black teachers. 
December 18, 2020
Black Teacher Matters Trailer
Black Teacher Matters is a podcast about stories, my own as a mixed Black man in education, and the stories of the Black teachers who shaped me in some kind of way. This podcast is about exploring the narratives I’ve developed for myself as a mixed Black man who works to help young people educate themselves. This podcast is about finding out what I’ve done and why I’m doing it and how we can keep more Black folks in this role. Each episode you’ll hear a story from me and then I’ll introduce you to someone significant in my educational life. I hope you enjoy.
December 2, 2020
Episode 1: Origin story of a Black teacher
Before I became a teacher, I was a kid with a book stealing habit, labeled as having a cavalier attitude towards education. All of that changed when I stepped into Mr. Miller's AP English class, Patterns in Black Literature. I tell my story and talk with Mr. Miller about the legacy and importance of Black teachers. *Note: Some names have been changed for the sake of privacy.
November 29, 2020