Taucia Gonzalez

Adai Tefera’s research focuses on improving educational policies for diverse learners with dis/abilities. She is particularly interested in understanding the socio-historical, political, and cultural dimensions that shape policies and impact learning. A second strand of her research focuses on knowledge mobilization, an emerging field that aims to increase the impact and use of research by utilizing interactive strategies that target wide audiences, including educators, policy makers, community organizers, parents, and students. She is specifically interested in knowledge mobilization efforts that advance equity in education.

Taucia Gonzalez is a doctoral candidate at Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University in the Curriculum and Instruction program with a concentration in special education. She is interested in expanding literacy practices for language minority students with learning disabilities. More specifically, her work examines how Latina/o language minority students engage in literacy across in- and out-of-school contexts.

Cueponcaxochitl’s research draws on decolonial and socio-cultural theories to examine Ancestral Computing for environmental, economic and social sustainability. Ancestral Computing for sustainability is an ecosystems approach to solving complex problems by interweaving Ancestral Knowledge Systems and computer science. She is a Xicana scholar activist who applies the interdisciplinary frameworks, coloniality of power and figured worlds, to analyze identity formations and civic engagement across learning environments (formal and informal). Her research informs various areas of work such as foundations, teacher preparation programs, curriculum studies and policy in computer science education.

Sarah Alvarado Díaz is a research assistant for Equity Alliance and a first-year doctoral student in the Learning, Literacies and Technologies program, with a special interest in students who are labeled as English language learners, as students who receive special education services, and in particular, looking at disproportionate numbers of English language learners being referred for special education services or being placed in special education programs.  Prior to coming to ASU as a full-time student she worked as an elementary school teacher in a South Phoenix school for sixteen years, where she worked with first through third grade students, and many years as a dual language teacher, in English and Spanish.  

This blog is written from the perspective of our four voices combined. You will see that the lines between our stories are blurred. Our combined experiences in policy and teaching in diverse settings is weaved into the voice of one person with four intersectional paths of theory and practice. Read more

Taucia GonzalezTaucia Gonzalez is a student at Arizona State University pursing a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Special Education. Prior to becoming a full time graduate student, she taught in a culturally rich school community that promoted and supported bilingualism and biliteracy. Her research interests focus on the intersections of culture, language, and disability within an urban context; with particular interest in how ideologies create and control spaces.

My daughter Camila is back at school after a two week break.  Last night while I was making dinner, I noticed her engrossed in homework, and she even seemed to be smiling.  In order to understand why this struck me as suspicious you need to understand our history with homework.   For the past year, I have become very hands-off with it.  Yes, I know.  This is an appalling thing for an educator to say, but you need to understand that homework was destroying my relationship with my daughter.

I used to think, a thirty minute homework assignment?  Piece of cake! After all, when I taught, I had teenage boys reading poetry like kittens lapping milk out of the palm of my hand.  I could handle my nine-year old and her reading homework.

Everything would start off picture-perfect.  Camila would sit at the dining room table armed with her unzipped Eastpack, library books with shiny plastic covers, yellow Ticonderogas with their pointy graphite and clean pink erasers poised for action, and a black and white composition book open and waiting for her tiny hands…but things would quickly turn sour.   The dining room table, with all of its shiny homework tools, would become a war zone. Read more

Taucia GonzalezTaucia Gonzalez is a student at Arizona State University pursing a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Special Education. Prior to becoming a full time graduate student, she taught in a culturally rich school community that promoted and supported bilingualism and biliteracy. Her research interests focus on the intersections of culture, language, and disability within an urban context; with particular interest in how ideologies create and control spaces.

If you ask my daughter, Camila, about her teacher, she will tell you, “He is the best teacher in the world.”  I had heard other kids praise Mr. Bandera as well.  Last January I spent two weeks launching a poetry inquiry in their class.  The kids were taking turns sharing out something they held in their heart.  One boy enthusiastically threw his fist in the air and shouted, “Mr. Bandera because he’s the best teacher ever!”  Wow, I looked over at the small statured teacher with the disheveled button up shirt; his tie a little off center, wondering what it was that made him the best teacher ever.

What do kids know about good teaching? Honestly, I had yet to see guided reading groups in his classroom, so I had my own critiques of his teaching.  I knew that the school was under a lot of pressure to raise their test scores, so I thought that might be a way for me to convince Mr. Bandera to incorporate guided reading.  Maybe there were a few things I could teach him, being that he was a fairly new teacher. Read more