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September 17

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Welcome to Mr. Lawrence-Riddell

Team Lycanthrope is extremely happy to welcome Mr. Lawrence-Riddell (Mr. L-R) to our team. Mr. L-R brings a vast experience with him. Here is an excerpt from an email he sent out to Team L parents.

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Dear Team L Families,

My name is Michael Lawrence-Riddell and I will be the Team L English Language Arts and social studies teacher. I am incredibly excited about this opportunity. I have been at ARMS for nearly twelve years: three as a math teacher, eight as an English teacher, and one as an instructional coach. I hold licenses in ELA, social studies, and mathematics.

I am exceptionally excited about guiding the students of Team L through an exploration of United States history and civics and also the ways in which literature can open up our worlds. I will send home course expectations for both ELA and social studies very soon, but I wanted to reach out to you all at the start of the new school year, as the fact that I am the teacher for Team L is a change.

A little bit about myself. I went to the Amherst Public Schools and upon graduation in 1994 I attended Wesleyan University where I majored in African-American Studies, with particular focus areas on literature and history from 1619-1887 (arrival of the first enslaved Africans through Reconstruction). My general philosophy around how I will approach the instruction of history/social studies is grounded in the idea that "students will be more successful at learning history if it is taught in a way that allows them to move back and forth between learning the narrative itself and understanding how the narrative is constructed". (Mayer, 1998) In other words, we will approach history as narrative, allowing students to imagine themselves into the lives of diverse people in our history and at the same time we will examine the ways that historical narratives get constructed, including a close look at dominant and counter narratives, thinking about whose stories get told and how. A through line through all of this will be how the past connects to the present and the personal and what students can do with the history they are learning. The answer is so much.

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