By Jennifer E. Obidah

Right here, the authors recount how they set out on a collaborative three-year research to discover the influence of racial and cultural transformations in a single in their city, heart tuition study rooms. They describe how they realized to confront and care for the demanding situations they confronted.

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With Karen we also describe how her perspectives on these students shifted during her 20 PERCEPTIONS OF AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDENTS 21 years in graduate school. We conclude with the story of meeting each other and the start of our collaboration. WORKING WITH AFRICAN AMERICAN CHILDREN JENNIFER Working with African American children was not as much a conscious decision for me as it was a way of life. I’ve worked with Black children all my life. Black children were my friends. They are members of my family.

Teachers equipped with this one-dimensional lens are incapable of effectively teaching these students. —Jennifer All my perceptions of African American students at this point in time were based on assumptions I had about them that came from what I had seen or heard from the media about life in the inner city and from the students’ placement in lower tracked classes. I assumed that these students were so-called underachievers because of their own shortcomings, which were the result of their upbringing.

Beginning my work with Karen in a relationship where my unique perspective was validated helped me to remember, value, and appreciate my homegrown intellect along with the knowledge I acquired in the university. Karen’s appreciation for my help and our subsequent success in her classroom became one of my rewards for continuing this work. KAREN When I started teaching, all of the students at the junior high school were White, mainly from middle-class families. In the 1970s, the school board decided on a busing policy under which students could transfer from one school to another on a volunteer-only basis.

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