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85 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars education as citizenship
I have my community college students read Kozol's essays and they always have a strong response leading to debate about thier own education and belief systems. The essays are highly accessible to general readers and blow the pants off the denser works of the most acclaimed education theorists. Like all Kozol's work, On Being a Teacher book is passionate, pointed and...
Published on March 8, 2000 by Julie Bolt

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14 of 49 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars On Being a Trouble Maker
I was very disappointed with this book. "On Being a Teacher" seemed to be a sorry attempt at flexing the author's perceived intellectual muscle. This book had less to do with strategies for being an effective teacher, and more to do with boiling blood wherever blood flows. Kozol is great at pointing out extremist problems with the American school system, but lacks any...
Published on July 25, 2009 by McKenzie


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85 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars education as citizenship, March 8, 2000
By 
Julie Bolt (Santa Monica, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: On Being a Teacher (Paperback)
I have my community college students read Kozol's essays and they always have a strong response leading to debate about thier own education and belief systems. The essays are highly accessible to general readers and blow the pants off the denser works of the most acclaimed education theorists. Like all Kozol's work, On Being a Teacher book is passionate, pointed and beautifully written. (Before emerging as a 60s activist, Kozol was a poet.) He asks us what teaching and schools are for: mantaining an inequitable status quo or achieving a vibrant democracy that all students (and teachers)feel they can enter into? You would be well served to read it and see what you think! Each short essay addresses a theme having to do with the ethical and social responsibilities of the teacher. Topics include "History from the bottom up," "The Hero in jail: the truth will set us free," and "It is evil to tell lies to children." Although this book is almost 20 years old, every essay still resonates and asks contmeperary questons. Savor this book if you have a bit of the revolutionary in you, or if you are feeling like you're on auto-pilot and need some revolutionary sprit infused into your veins. Even politically conservative readers like the one above will find they have an challenging and engaging dialog with this book. As for educators and parents, On Being a Teacher is a must. There is only one philosphical book about education that is more stunning, a book called The Night is Dark and I am Far From Home, also by Kozol. Sadly, that book is out of print. Hopefully that will change. In the meantime, On Being a Teacher continues to resound.
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31 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars in response to "a reader", October 8, 2005
This review is from: On Being a Teacher (Paperback)
I just want to respond to the review by "a reader." Jonathan Kozol was in fact an educator, and if you're read any of his other works, such as "Death at an Early Age," he gives us personal accounts from his own teaching. He is an amazing writer, and very powerful in the field of education. If you do not agree with his "conspiracy theories" that is fine, but please do not make it seem as if he is not qualified to write about what he does.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, December 24, 2012
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This review is from: On Being a Teacher (Paperback)
Kozol is always a great read. If you are a teacher, def read this book. He is one amazing individual.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book for teacher insight, January 16, 2014
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This review is from: On Being a Teacher (Paperback)
Good book for insights on what happens to teachers and how wthe system of education can affect how and what a teacher can accomplish.
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14 of 49 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars On Being a Trouble Maker, July 25, 2009
This review is from: On Being a Teacher (Paperback)
I was very disappointed with this book. "On Being a Teacher" seemed to be a sorry attempt at flexing the author's perceived intellectual muscle. This book had less to do with strategies for being an effective teacher, and more to do with boiling blood wherever blood flows. Kozol is great at pointing out extremist problems with the American school system, but lacks any practical solutions. I would highly recommend this book to the type of teacher that leaves the classroom each day to go home and loathe in self-hate, and quotes 1984 as their lifes guiding doctrine. There are more effective ways of guiding students to be change-making members of society than through the politics of fear and spending a day telling your students that conspiring corporations create teachers' guidebooks to guide the teacher in prescribed lessons, which are secretely designed to structure curriculum as institutionalized brainwashing. Most effective teachers I know don't need an author with 4 years experience inside an actual classroom to tell them that the textbook companies write textbooks with their own ideas in them. These teachers, contrary to Kozol's expectations of educators, have the ability to critically evaluate situations and materials and formulate their own teaching methods.
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7 of 135 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars anti-establishment activist writes a book, October 20, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: On Being a Teacher (Paperback)
I now know that an anti-war protester from the sixties can write a book on education. The book was full of conspiracy theories of how the system is indoctrinating both students and teachers. I do think people wanting to be a teacher should read it,so they know that anti-establishment educators are still around.The truth is in my opinion that teachers should teach more respect for tradition,and more patriotism.Students already have no respect for authority and this book suggest we go one step more.The book was interesting as well,especially if you dont agree with the authors point of view.
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On Being a Teacher
On Being a Teacher by Jonathan Kozol (Paperback - March 1, 2009)
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