Why Kids Love (and Hate) School: Reflections on Difference (2018)

Steven P. Jones & Eric C. Sheffield, Eds.

Publisher’s Link

A Volume in the Academy for Educational Studies Book Series in Education


This collection consists of theoretical discussions, personal reflections, research reports, and policy suggestions sourced in the experiences of our most vulnerable students with an eye to making schools places all students might love rather than hate. The essays take up these issues from the perspectives of poverty, gender, race, ethnicity, ability, language, and religion among others.

These essays also provide practical advice for teachers and administrators—both practicing and pre-service—for making classrooms and schools spaces that would encourage our students to say, “I love school.”


“Jones and Sheffield have adeptly and brilliantly conducted a chorus of significant voices to tell their stories of the various forces that make learning spaces either relevant sanctuaries or worthless places of physical and psychological trauma, perhaps both. I highly recommend this powerful anthology of stories to all actors interested in making schools exciting places of critical democracy and sites of curious inquiry and positive transformation.” 
– René Antrop-Gonzalez, Dean School of Education, Metropolitan State University
Why Kids Love (and Hate) Schoolunderscores how essential relevancy and relationships are to learning. This book gives voice to our students and how we can help create meaningful learning environments with them.” 
– Gloria Delany-Barmann, Professor and Bilingual/ESL Program Coordinator, Western Illinois University
“The editors and chapter authors in this volume make a valiant effort to engage an age-old realization in the United States: the idea that education is very different from “school.” If school is order and compliance and education is questioning said order and compliance, readers will be able to develop a clear understanding of the push for viable education from a grounded perspective. I am thankful to them for the constant reminder that attaining educational justice is a struggle in perpetuity.” 
– David Stovall, Ph.D, Educational Policy Studies and African-American Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago
Table of Contents

Laura Ruth Johnson

Introduction: Why Kids Love (or Hate) School
Steven P. Jones & Eric C. Sheffield

Everybody’s Listening when it Matters: Students Love School When its Relevant to their Lives
Jesse Moya

We Really Hated School: The Journey of Two Black PhD’s From Alienation to Transformation
De’Andre Shepard & Kalvin DaRonne Harvell

Meeting the Needs of Muslim Learners in an Islamophobic Era
Parisa Meymand

“Teachers always have, like, something new”: Mexican American Adolescents’ Perceptions of Classrooms in which they Learn, orDon’t Learn
Janine Bempechat, Margarita Jimenez-Silva, Jin Li, & Susan D. Holloway

The Power of Schools to Redirect Pathways: Shaping and Supporting Students’ Love of Learning Across Time and Place
Eréndira Rueda

Under the School Roof, Inside Classroom Walls: The Power of Place-Based Plot Patterns to Shape School Stories of Happinessand Glee or Humiliation and Shame for Elementary Students
Kathy Carter, Amanda Sugimoto, Kathleen Stoehr, & Griff Carter

Kids Love a Classroom for Everyone
Rob Schulze

Forgotten Learners: Academically Strong Kids in Struggling Schools
Jeanne Carey Ingle

Chain Link Poetry
Robin Brandehoff

Creating Liberating Classroom Conditions: Alternative School Settings
Lynn Hemmer & Michael Watson

Igniting Passion among Students (and Teachers) for Civic Engagement: Loving, Seeing, and Hearing our Students: A Framework for Engagement in Science
Rachelle A. Haroldson

Restorative practices in Public School Education: Beyond Sensitization to Skills-Building and Organizational Change
Robert C. Chalwell Jr.