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5.0 out of 5 stars Teaching African American Children
Today's urban public schools in the United States are filled with hopeful, eager students who are considered in the racial minority while many of the teachers they will encounter are white and female. In most cases, they do not share the same experiences nor view the world through the same lenses. In some cases, they are worlds apart. Ladson-Billings has constructed a...
Published on Sept. 22 2002 by Theodorea Berry

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This
The book "Dremkeepers" written by Gloria Ladson-Billings was not at all what I expected.I am a college student majoring in education and I had to read this book for my class.I chose this book because I thought this book was going to be about the true stories of how African American students over came the odds with the help of their "teachers."...
Published on July 26 1999


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This, July 26 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
The book "Dremkeepers" written by Gloria Ladson-Billings was not at all what I expected.I am a college student majoring in education and I had to read this book for my class.I chose this book because I thought this book was going to be about the true stories of how African American students over came the odds with the help of their "teachers." However, this was a book in which Billings took her own life stories and pulled out her best teachers or teachers that she felt were excellent at their career. Ms. Billings put the world in black and white and that's not it. Yes,in some cases AA children do learn differently depending on their environment,faith,cultural background and so forth but does not every child. I can sense that the author has a lot of disappointments with the education of African Americans and I can relate to her. However, the world is not Black and White and we as educators must be able to love and teach all culturals to be successful.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Dated, weak on causes and solutions of achievement gap, March 27 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
Gloria Ladson-Billings needs to read No Excuses, Closing the Racial Gap in Learning by Abigail and Stephan Thernstrom. Ladson-Billings' book, Dreamkeepers, is lacking profound impact to the way we think about education and the problems faced in meeting the problems of the minority population of African-Ameican students. It is missing sufficient, current research to support causes and solutions to the achievement gap between African-American students and all other students. Frank, honest dialogue is needed to change the outcomes of the black population. Her book is just more lip service to examples of good teaching that are obvious to most educators. It is neither helpful nor thought-provoking.
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1.0 out of 5 stars subtle racism, Aug. 14 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
During the past 40 some years the white race in America has been blamed for societies wrongs. Even whites who have never committed an act of overt or covert racism are a part of the problem; in fact as critical race theory goes the concept of a white Race must be abolished. Feeding on the notion that minorities cant be racist she gleefully states that skin only matters when your black. Somehow black skin has made students and their black teachers into models of openess, kindness, consideration and co-peration (has she visted the D.C schools lately?)....To prove her point that women, esp black feminists, are the only true models of caring. In her so called research she describes 3 (CARING) and experienced female teachers with a young white (boo, hiss) male. Of course the white guy can't win, but not because he is inexperienced, but because he is a white male who uses objective reasoning while the women use the far superior expressive approach (ok chillrenn who can say MF 30 tmes and then divide it by 5?)...This ain't research it's social engineering with an agenda..The same feel good agenda that tells black children that their Egyptian ancestors (not) helped to build the pyramids or that they are decendants of kings and queens....the author's appproach is not differant than that of the slave masters of long ago.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Dream On, Aug. 14 2003
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
Another book of wishfull thinking and reflective racism all written under the guise of acadamia. The author begins her premise by stating that when she was in school that she could not keep up with white studens because of their competitiveness (read:bad white kids, bad bad)while she had come from an idealic afrocentric school where children learned and produced together (can anyone say Neo-Marxism)...
The majority of her book follows in typical order; Ladson claims that black children make up a unique cultural group whose very presence requirers that we all change our particular world views to fit theirs whether it may be destructive or not.
Ladson's main emphasis is on what she calls Culturally Relevant Teaching; ie., both color and culture do matter. Yet those who supposedly teach that way are just modeling a generic respectfull ethos and not a particular cultural standard as Ladson wants us to believe.
Only in the appendix of the book do we really understand the authors agenda. Guess what? all bad things lead to the white man!!!...Ladson lauds black feminists as "having developed an ethic of caring suggesting that personal emotions, expressiveness and empathy are central to knowledge (read black knowledge) and only black women have this....as for the white male he is dispassionate and objective!! nuff said!!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Teaching African American Children, Sept. 22 2002
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
Today's urban public schools in the United States are filled with hopeful, eager students who are considered in the racial minority while many of the teachers they will encounter are white and female. In most cases, they do not share the same experiences nor view the world through the same lenses. In some cases, they are worlds apart. Ladson-Billings has constructed a book that provides insights, concepts and ideas that address the bridging of the cultural gap between African American students and teachers assimilated into the majority culture. This book is smart and useful as it addresses what all teachers can do to teach African American children with cultural competence. I strongly recommend this book to parents, prospective teachers, new teachers, veteran teachers and teacher-educators.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Linguistics, Feb. 28 2002
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
I read this book for an education class, *after* I had already done extensive linguistic study. From a linguistic standpoint, Shirley Brice Heath's book "Ways With Words" is much more effective. Ladson-Billings glosses over the differences between African-American Vernacular English (AAVE) and Standard American English (SAE). There are vital distinctions between these that are important for any teacher of either dialect to understand! Heath's book is much more comphrehensive regarding both AAVE and SAE and even teaching in a classroom where both are spoken. I heartily recommend Heath; you can take or leave Ladson-Billings and I prefer to leave it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Linguistics, Feb. 28 2002
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
I read this book for an education class, *after* I had already done extensive linguistic study. From a linguistic standpoint, Shirley Brice Heath's book "Ways With Words" is much more effective. Ladson-Billings glosses over the differences between African-American Vernacular English (AAVE) and Standard American English (SAE). There are vital distinctions between these that are important for any teacher of either dialect to understand! Heath's book is much more comphrehensive regarding both AAVE and SAE and even teaching in a classroom where both are spoken. I heartily recommend Heath; you can take or leave Ladson-Billings and I prefer to leave it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling glimpses at successful teaching, Jan. 18 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
Ladson-Billings offers her readers the challenge to change teaching practices to be more culturally sensitive to individual student's needs, particularly of African American students. She portrays a culturally relevant style of teaching through the lenses of eight superior teachers and examines the possibilities of how this pedagogy can be incorporated into today's schools.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Must-Read Book for All to Keep The Hopes and Dreams Alive, Sept. 24 2001
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This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
After reading Dr. Ladson-Billing's book, The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African-American Children, I found it to be a truly inspiring and enriching book with a great perspective
and discourse for the terms of multicultural education in practice and culturally relevant teaching. The author uses a
great technique by telling her story in three voices. Her first written voice is; that of an African American scholar and researcher, second; that of an African American teacher, and third; that of an African American woman, parent, and community
member.
It is very well written and easy to read and comprehend for anyone. This should be a reference and resource book in the L.R.C. or library, as well as classrooms of all urban schools and teacher-training programs for teacher/educator skills and practices.

The author, Gloria Ladson-Billings, explains thourghly in, The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African- American Children,
how these eight successful teachers of African American children, made the connection between the students culture, community, home and school. They did this by living and learning their students' culture and relating it to their teaching methods and practices.
This book has really helped me in my doctoral qualitative research studies; to have a better understanding of African American culturally relevant teaching pedagody, from theory to practice. It's a must and great resource book for all pre-service and in-service teachers, all educators, administrators, student teacher supervisors, college teacher training instructors, and parents too. We can keep the hopes and dreams of our African American and all other diverse children alive! The teachers can learn and become successful and feel good about themselves and be more competent about their teaching practices. Thus, as a result of this, the students will be successful too! We must think positive, if you believe it you can achieve it. African American children can have a quality of academic achievement and success.

Hats off to this author and to the field of EDUCATION! She gives us a complete and comprehensive knowledge base of what culturally relevant teaching, teacher efficacy and self-esteem are as well. I highly recommend this book to everyone, especially those in the field of education working with African American children!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, July 31 2000
By 
jlm (Macon, GA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children (Paperback)
I am an education major that chose to read this book as part of my class assignment. In Dreamkeepers I feel the author does a great job of addressing culturally relevant teaching for African Americans which she points out has never been done in book or manual format. I enjoyed the book because it addressed the issue in such a manner that any minority group in the U.S. could relate to. I know that some may not enjoy or understand this book or the author view point but she addresses a very critical issue in the African American community. My hat goes off to Ms. Billings.
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The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children
The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children by Gloria Ladson-Billings (Paperback - Jan. 15 1997)
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