Produced and Directed
by Lisa Merton and
Alan Dater
89 minutes
The World in Claire's Classroom
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  What can a classroom of first and second graders in the whitest state in the union teach us about respecting diversity and building community? THE WORLD IN CLAIRE'S CLASSROOM documents a veteran public school teacher and her class over the course of a year, with a focus on the children's sustained, in-depth study of another culture. Within this deep and textured exploration she continually focuses the children's attention back on themselves in relationship to each other, their local community, and the world. The film gives the viewer an intimate portrait of this teacher, her creative, community-oriented classroom and academically rich curriculum, which integrates math, literacy, the arts, cultural competency and conflict resolution. This exceptional documentary captures a genuine, unselfconscious learning experience. It is joyful, provoking and moving.  

Viewer Comments:

"A most impressive, and moving, demonstration of how a white teacher in a white community can give her children a truly multicultural education." -Courtney B. Cazden, Harvard Graduate School of Education

"Unlike many films about teaching which I have seen, this film is beautifully crafted. The sound is clear and joyful; the themes thread through, return, disappear, reappear; the images are sharp and memorable. My experience as a teacher of teachers has shown me that the film is a provocation and an inspiration to experienced teachers and to teachers in training. I won't leave home without it." -Heidi Watts, Faculty Emerita, Education Department, Antioch New England Graduate School "

". . . Claire is the teacher we all should have had, the one we wish upon our children - - - even-keeled, nurturing, humorous, determined, creative, and spectacularly committed after 45 years in the primary school trenches. What we witness is a classroom full of innovation, liveliness, and love. . . Recommended for public libraries and academic collections serving teaching programs." - Video Librarian

"For teacher educators, this video is worth a hundred texts, and that's much more than a thousand words." -Charlie Rathbone, College of Education and Social Services, University of Vermont

"The demonstrated teaching style serves as both an inspiration and model for other educators and aspiring teachers." -Booklist

"The dignity and respect granted to each student during class discussions leads to the comment that 'justice and fairness are not an abstraction' in the Westminster West SchoolÉ Highly Recommended."- Charles Greenberg, MC Journal: the Journal of Academic Media Librarianship

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