Developing Political Activity as if the World is on Fire

Authors: , , ,


This piece examines the formulation of political activity among science teachers during a time of rising global movements. Situated amidst continuous calls for educational reform, specifically for science teaching and learning (Bang et. al, 2012; Carter, 2005), this work forwards an argument to explicitly cultivate the political activity of teachers as a means to engage a justice-centered science (Morales-Doyle & Gutstein, 2019; Strong, 2017). The development of teacher identity (Avraamidou, 2016) in connection with the political economy of schools and society is examined through a concept of personhood (Stetsenko, 2012), positing that social change and activism is formative and integral to human nature. Using grounded theory approach, we analyzed educators’ responses from dialogic interviews regarding science education in the context of a large, urban district, and situate teacher articulations and positionality regarding informal and formal science education. These articulations elucidate forms of political engagement in the context of a socio-political history of colonialism, capitalism, and imperialism (Mutegi, 2011). This piece presents a heuristic in order to widen a view of science teacher articulations and enactments - calling attention to the time and support necessary to develop a transformative activist stance (Stetsenko, 2011).

Keywords: activism, personhood, teacher development, political activity, science education

How to Cite: Das, A. , Strong, L. , McCullough, S. & Adams, J. D. (2020) “Developing Political Activity as if the World is on Fire”, Journal of Critical Thought and Praxis. 10(1). doi: