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Teaching for Change moves online amid challenges for diversity in books

Published March 18, 2015 by The Washington Post

Books seem to consecrate certain spaces — especially rooms where you don’t expect to find them. Like gracious hosts, they welcome you. Like confidants, they reveal far more about where you are than the decor ever could. When I first walked into Busboys & Poets’ 14th and V Street location, the hostess greeted me warmly, but it was Teaching for Change, the bookstore tucked into the corner behind her, that beckoned me in.

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Politics and Prose to Sell Books at Flagship Busboys and Poets

Published March 5, 2015 by Shelf Awareness

This spring Teaching for Change, which for 10 years has owned and run the bookstore at the flagship Busboys and Poets restaurant at 14th and V Street, N.W., in Washington, D.C., will hand over responsibility for the bookstore to Politics and Prose, which now operates bookstores at the five other Busboys and Poets locations, which are in Maryland, Virginia and the District. Teaching for Change will continue to review, recommend and promote books that address key themes in the classroom and current events online through its webstore,

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Works4Me: Making the Connection

Published November, 2014 by National Education Association (NEA)

When parents and students come from various countries, different backgrounds, and even have language or literacy skills that vary, it’s sometimes difficult to know where to begin with parent outreach and involvement.

At Mt. Rainier Elementary School in Prince Georges County, Md., story sharing is the first step.

That’s the foundation of Tellin’ Stories, Family Partners, a new program made possible through the social justice organization Teaching for Change.

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D.C. mayoral candidates sound off on future of charter and traditional schools

Published on October 23, 2014 by The Washington Post

D.C. mayoral candidates faced a math problem of sorts Wednesday night at the campaign’s only major forum devoted to education: In 1966, the District had about 147,000 students in 196 schools. Now, there are 86,000 students in 213 neighborhood and charter school buildings, yet the city continues to open charter schools.

Is this path sustainable?

After the forum, Deborah Menkart, executive director of the nonprofit Teaching for Change, said she was dismayed that the candidates seem so focused on expanding choice, which she believes could undermine neighborhood schools. “It’s a runaway train,” she said.

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Cool Idea of the Day: ‘Sponsor a Bookshelf’

Published on October 6, 2014 by Shelf Awareness

The Teaching for Change Bookstore at Busboys and Poets, Washington, D.C., which features “books that encourage children and adults to question, challenge and re-think the world beyond the headlines,” has launched a “Sponsor a Bookshelf” initiative “to keep the bookstore in operation, curate the selection of books and coordinate author events. Become a part of our bookstore by sponsoring one of 20+ shelves from which thousands of parents, teachers, activists, and the general public browse and buy books.”

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Race, Perspective, and Bookstores: Local Shops Promote “A Fuller Picture of Life”

Published in August, 2014 by East of the River DC News

Educator and activist Allison R. Brown adds that the TFC bookstore is more than its books or events. “Between the titles, book signings, and patrons looking for smart titles to add to their libraries,” Brown argues, TFC bookstore changes perceptions. “TFC helps bridge the divide between perception and reality for those who don’t perceive of people of color as intellectuals.” She adds a concern that gentrification will lead to loss of “places for people to make that connection. I think DC is a model of bridging that perception with reality solely because of the Teaching for Change bookstore. There isn’t another place like it in the city.”

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Teaching About Ferguson: Do’s and Dont’s

Published on August 17, 2014 by The Root

Do take advantage of prepackaged lesson plans: You don’t have to start from scratch. Teaching for Change goes beyond proposing individual materials and offers a set of full-formed lesson plans relevant to the issues raised by Mike Brown’s death. (There are materials on everything from the militarization of police to human rights.)

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Limbaugh Attacks D.C.’s Busboys and Poets

Published on July 12, 2014 by The Washington Afro American

Radio personality Rush Limbaugh, known for his racist tirades, attacked popular D.C. bookstore, Busboys and Poets, because “it dissed his tow children’s books.” The ultra-conservative talk show host was upset that the executive director of teaching for Change remarked on a C-Span network that it specialized in children’s books written by and about people of color and many times ignored best sellers, like that of rush Limbaugh.

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Rush into Battle

Published on June 19, 2014 by Teaching Tolerance

You wouldn’t expect a health food store to carry Pringles.

Nor would you tune in to the Cartoon Network in search of episodes of Mad Men or Breaking Bad.

So we’re wondering why Rush Limbaugh thinks the Teaching for Change Bookstore at Busboys and Poets in Washington, D.C., should carry his Rush Revere line of books for young readers?

If you don’t know about the Teaching for Change Bookstore—and it’s well worth knowing—here’s the lowdown. It’s small and selective. Its children’s section gives priority to books that feature children of color. They do not offer Mr. Limbaugh’s books.

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Teaching for Change, Supporters React to Limbaugh Slam

Published on June 19, 2014 by American Booksellers Association

The Teaching for Change Bookstore at Busboys and Poets in Washington, D.C., strives to feature titles reflecting the country’s population, including the 37 percent of Americans who are people of color, despite the fact that only 10 percent of books published in the past five years have been about people of color.

During a C-SPAN Book TV broadcast last week, Teaching for Change Executive Director Deborah Menkart discussed the need for diverse children’s books and noted that nearly 90 percent of the children’s titles sold by the store are about or by people of color. Rush Limbaugh’s Rush Revere books for children are not carried at the store because they don’t adhere to the store’s mission, she said.

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Rush Limbaugh Goes on Rant Accusing Teaching for Change of Racism

Published on June 19, 2014 by Human Rights Campaign

Rush Limbaugh doesn’t seem to understand what racism is. On Wednesday, he called out Teaching for Change for not carrying his own children’s books and for promoting books written by and about people of color.

“This is exclusionary, it’s racist, it’s bigoted, and it’s the opposite of everything they claim to be,” he said on his radio show. “They claim that they’re tolerant. They claim they’re open-minded. They claim that they are colorblind and all that. They are the most bigoted, racist people.”

Limbaugh gets it wrong in more ways than one. Teaching for Change never said anything about being colorblind.

Continue reading at Human Rights Campaign >>


Rush Revere: Victor Vanquished by Tiny Bookstore?

Published on June 19, 2014 by Education Town Hall

“American children are growing up with a distorted sense of reality: white children see themselves reflected endlessly” in children’s books, says author and activist Zetta Elliott, “whereas children of color rarely see themselves at all.”

The Cooperative Children’s Book Council has been reviewing and documenting the state of children’s publishing for more than 25 years. Their report finds that most children’s books — well over 90% of those reviewed in 2013 — are still about white children.

“Industry gatekeepers seem determined to exclude writers of color,” Elliott says, citing her own experiences in publishing. She self-publishes her children’s books, and then finds that her titles “face further exclusion from large and small booksellers alike.”

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Rush Limbaugh Calls Teaching for Change Racist

Published on June 19, 2014 by Shelf Awareness

On his show yesterday, conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh devoted an entire segment to harshly criticizing Teaching for Change for emphasizing children’s books about people of color at a time when just 10% of titles published during the last five years were about people of color.

Limbaugh called the organization “racist” for not carrying his bestselling children’s books at Busboys and Poets, Washington, D.C., where Teaching for Change runs a bookstore and schedules/hosts many of the author events. He learned about the decision while watching a recent C-Span 2 Book TV broadcast during which Teaching for Change executive director Deborah Menkart introduced Dave Zirin, author of Brazil’s Dance with the Devil: The World Cup, the Olympics, and the Fight for Democracy.

Continue reading at Shelf Awareness >>


Support Teaching for Change!

Published on June 17, 2014 by Fledgling, Zetta Elliott’s Blog

Rush Limbaugh has directed his hordes to attack the nonprofit bookstore run by Teaching for Change. Believe it or not, he thinks they’re racist for promoting books by people of color!

You can read all about it over at the TFC blog, OR you can show your support by purchasing more multicultural books from them! All of my titles are available on their website and I know you can get Max Loves Muñecas! in the D.C. store. You can’t really reason with online trolls but you can put your money where your mouth is…

Continue reading at Fledgling, Zetta Elliott’s Blog >>

washington city paper

Rush Limbaugh Attacks the Bookstore at Busboys and Poets

Published on June 17, 2014 by Washington City Paper

The independently operated bookstore at the V Street NW location of Busboys and Poets became the target of one of conservative radio hosts Rush Limbaugh’s on-air diatribes Monday.

Limbaugh blasted the store, which is operated by the nonprofit Teaching for Change, for not selling his new children’s book, Rush Revere and the First Patriots.

Continue reading at Washington City Paper >>

daily kos

Aw, Rush Limbaugh’s Sad – Tiny Bookstore Rejects His Books & Won’t Play With Him

Published on June 19, 2014 by Daily Kos

Finally, it took a small, independent bookstore in Washington DC to stand up and turn down Rush Limbaugh’s children’s history books. The words sting my fingers as I type: Limbaugh-Children-History-Books. (One of these things is so not like the others.)

Teaching For Change, a non profit organization that owns, operates and is housed in Busboys And Poets, ‘encourages teachers and students to question and re-think the world inside and outside their classrooms, build a more equitable, multicultural society, and become active global citizens.’ It’s no wonder they flat out rejected Limbaugh’s ridiculous ‘Rush Revere’ books. Limbaugh’s response?

Continue reading at Daily Kos >>

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