Exploring challenging, controversial and confronting topics in Social Studies teaching: Editor’s Message
Keywords:media review, controversil issues, cooperative learning, democracy classrooms
I would like to introduce myself as the new media Editor for the Journal of International Social Studies. I hope to bring a perspective to the journal from outside the United States as I was born and grew up in the UK and completed my teaching degree at Nottingham Trent University and now work at The University of Newcastle, Australia. After a period of teaching in the UK, I moved to Australia where I worked in primary (elementary) schools for 13 years before embarking on an academic career at the University of Newcastle as a teacher educator with Primary Education specialisation. My teaching includes Primary Maths, Social studies and integrated curriculum as my main specialist areas. I have recently completed a long term study of Cooperative Learning with early career teachers and how this classroom approach leads to democracy classrooms using an action research approach. I developed professional development programs for early career teachers to assist them in implementing cooperative strategies and democratic processes in busy and ever increasingly accountable primary classrooms leading to my doctorate degree. My research strengths lie particularly in this area of globally valuable strategies to build cohesive classrooms.