Travis Bristol, one of BTR’s Clinical Teacher Educators for Secondary English, taught English and global studies at two New York City public high schools. Currently, he is a fourth-year PhD candidate at Teachers College, Columbia University; his research interest focuses on the intersection of race and gender in organizations. Travis’s most recent work includes consulting for The World Bank in Washington D.C. and Georgetown, Guyana; his projects included developing a male teacher recruitment campaign; surveying teachers, students, and principals to create a strategy to reduce teacher and student absenteeism; providing a needs assessment for the distant teacher training program; and, in line with Travis’s research interest, designing a curriculum for teachers on engaging boys in the classroom. He holds a BA in English from Amherst College and an MA in the Teaching of English from Stanford University. Travis is a product of the New York City public school system.
Inspiration to teach:
I am unapologetic in my belief that a “quality” education allows the economically disenfranchised to become socially mobile. I am inspired to teach because I have experienced, personally, the consequences of educational malpractice as a student in New York City public schools. At the same time, however, there were a few teachers such as Sarah Gopen and Elayne Shapiro, my 7th and 11th grade E/la teachers, who got me excited about learning: I still hear Ms. Shapiro shouting “STELLA” as we read A Streetcar Named Desire. I continue to teach because I know that all students can learn if we, teachers, create the conditions for learning; I feel deeply the moral imperative to create such conditions.
About my students:
Over the past eight years, I’ve worked with learners in various settings from teenagers in small public high schools and correctional facilities, to adults in international professional development sessions, and recent undergrads and career changers in BTR. The one constant has been that learning happened most when I abdicated responsibility for being the only teacher in the room and created a space where I could be in a community of teachers.
Happily, BTR reminds me a lot of my own teacher preparation program – STEP (Stanford Teacher Education Program). First, here at BTR, I do believe that there is a sincere commitment to prepare our residents to teach for social justice. Also, all of my fellow CTEs have a deep theoretical and practical understanding of teaching and learning.
Favorite Thing in the World To Do:
I love to travel!
To whom much is given, much is required.
Recently by TravisRSS Feed
Ida B. Wells-Barnett, the late American Black Freedom Struggle leader and anti-lynching activist, asserted, in 1900, that “OUR country’s national crime is lynching.” In the face of the high profile cases in which a jury failed to… [more]
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In my previous post, I mentioned the impetus for creating an after-school program for mostly Black and Latino males during my third year of teaching, in 2006. Specifically, I discussed how boys were more likely to be suspended and sent to the dean’s office… [more]
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This post is the first in a new series on Teaching Boys.
In my third year of teaching, I began to realize that males—specifically Black and Latino males—made up a disproportionate number of the students who ended up in the dean’s office or receiving… [more]
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[This post is the fifth of a series in which Travis shares comments and feedback from the 10th grade students he taught during his first year as a teacher, and reflects on his own practice. Please click here to read the original… [more]
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