Teaching STEM #4Real

S2 E9: ‘Āina & Place-Based Instruction in STEM, With Whitney Aragaki

Teaching STEM #4Real podcast season 2 episode 9
Welcome back to season two of Teaching STEM #4Real! Today, we are excited to be joined by Whitney Aragaki!

Whitney Aragaki (she/they) is an educator, parent, and learner from Hilo, Hawaiʻi. She supports students to learn through a lens of abundance that honors place, people and cultures. Her teaching focuses around conversations, practices and systems that sustain the intimate inter-relationship of public education, community and environment. Whitney is the 2022 Hawaiʻi State Teacher of the Year and National Teacher of the Year Finalist. She is a National Board Certified Teacher in Adolescence and Young Adulthood Mathematics, and a two-time state finalist for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

In this episode, we’ll discuss how Whitney became the teacher she is today, the feeling of being othered in STEM, and how Whitney creates an inclusive classroom. Besides this, we’ll also talk about how Whitney brings Aina into the classroom, the way her teaching goes beyond the curriculum, and what teachers can do to create a culturally responsive classroom. Last but not least, Whitney will share her thoughts on what the system needs for teachers to be able to become more adaptable, teaching in colonized spaces, and more! Let’s talk all things science and culture!

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Teaching STEM #4Real is a podcast dedicated to 4 real conversations on educational equity in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education hosted by Dr. Leena Bakshi. If you’re interested in exploring what anti-racism and socially just instruction look like in our classrooms, schools, and beyond, you are in the right place. Dr. Bakshi is also the founder of the non-profit, STEM4Real. Please visit our website for information on how to partner with us. Thank you for helping us make STEM for real.

Learn more about how we promote student equity and social justice in STEM4Real