Windows and Mirrors, Stages and Masks: Strategies for the Borderlands

  • Dorothy A. Haecker Palo Alto College
Keywords: Multicultural, Curriculum, Pedagogy


To think about curriculum and pedagogy is to ask the perennial questions, what (really, what!) should we teach, and how (really,how!) we should teach it. To think about these questions in the "borderlands" is to consider teaching settings in which students try to preserve their home culture in the process of journeying into the culture of the traditional American classroom. This article charts one teacher's journey from a monocultural to a multicultural curriculum and from the front to the back of the classroom. She uses the metaphor of curriculum as a mirror in which to see self and a window from which to see others, both in deeper and more complex ways. She describes the pedagogical uses of the theatrical devices of stage and mask, on and behind which students can learn to play with ideas and act in the "as if" mode so essential to real education.