Native versus Nonnative: A Literacy Teacher Educator’s Story

Cheu-Jey Lee


This paper presents a story of a nonnative English-speaking teacher educator who prepares native English-speaking pre- and in-service teachers to teach literacy/language arts in elementary school. It portrays what the teacher educator has experienced in exploring the meaning and purpose of literacy education for native speakers. A critical investigation of the teacher educator’s pedagogical practices in relation to his philosophical perspectives stands out as the backbone of the story. Through this investigation, the tension between “native” and “nonnative” is cast in a new light and argued to be a positive quality that should be valued in the field of literacy education.


critical literacy; nonnative English speakers; teacher education; literacy education

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