Books

Home of Her Heart:

A novel (available now)

HEART

 Image credit: benjamin lee hicks

At age 10, Luisa is separated from her birth country and family when she is adopted and transported from Colombia to Canada. Seven years later Luisa still has questions. Why did her mamá die of pneumonia when antibiotics could have saved her?  Why did her papá disappear?  When a long-awaited trip to Bogotá is suddenly cancelled, Luisa leaves Toronto without permission to return to the orphanage she last knew as home.  Determined to find answers and reconnect with her birth family, Luisa risks alienating her adopted family to make a place for herself in Bogotá, the home of her heart.

At age 16, Nana Lottie flees Nazi Germany through the Kindertransport Program, where she comes to England to wait for her parents to rejoin her. Caught up in the brutal violence of the Shoah, they never come. After losing her entire family, Lottie needs to find a way to carry on.

Spanning borders from Colombia to Canada, Germany to England, a grandmother and her granddaughter, both survivors of state violence, search for family and a place to call home.

Advance Praise for Home of Her Heart

I really appreciate the inclusive and empathetic lens Tara Goldstein shares in this story. It means a lot of us adoptees to be represented with complexity-including the anger, grief, and sadness that we often feel unable to share.
-Martha Hen, writer and editor

I sat down with Home of Her Heart and didn’t put the pages down until the end. I couldn’t bear to leave Luisa and her life. Tara Goldstein has woven a multi – generational story told by Luisa a young woman who has a thirst for the truth, an appetite for love, and a spirit driven by both blood and chosen family. Tara transports the reader to other continents, different times in history linking 17-year-old Luisa with her adoptive 102-year-old Grandmother Lottie. Luisa and Lottie’s stories remind us of how war and conflict effects children and how their young spirits can find hope for new lives. I was transported into these women’s stories.

Mary Ellen MacLean, Playwright/ Creator/Actor/Director

Our Children Are Your Students:

LGBTQ Families Speak Out (2021)

Tara Goldstein with contributions by Pam Baer, benjamin lee hicks, Bishop (Yasmin) Owis, Kate Reid, and Jenny Salisbury.

Winner of a 2023 Society of Education Professors Outstanding Book Award.

Winner of a 2022 CHOICE award for Outstanding Academic Title.

Our Children are Your Students reports on the various tactics that LGBTQ families use to work with schools that don’t anticipate the arrival of their families and children. The book features a verbatim theatre script called Out at School, which is based on interviews conducted with 37 LGBTQ families about their experiences in school. The play contains 22 scenes of verbatim monologues and dialogues. A set of images created by visual artist benjamin lee hicks accompanies each scene. The play also contains three original songs composed by musician Kate Reid, who draws on a number of the themes embedded in the scenes. Links to performances of the songs and to the artwork are available on taragoldstein.com

Our Children are Your Students reports on the various tactics that LGBTQ families use to work with schools that don’t anticipate the arrival of their families and children. The book features a verbatim theatre script called Out at School, which is based on interviews conducted with 37 LGBTQ families about their experiences in school. The play contains 22 scenes of verbatim monologues and dialogues. A set of images created by visual artist benjamin lee hicks accompanies each scene. The play also contains three original songs composed by musician Kate Reid, who draws on a number of the themes embedded in the scenes. Links to performances of the songs and to the artwork are available on taragoldstein.com

Reviews

Our Children Are Your Students points to the everyday challenges and celebrations of LGBTQ families and children as they navigate their way through the Canadian education system. Incorporating the voices of LGBTQ families who are so often silenced by schools, Tara Goldstein and the LGBTQ Families research team have done a truly wonderful job in bringing their experiences to light. An inspiring, honest, hopeful, sensitive, thought-provoking and beautifully presented book.  All teachers, pre-service teachers and teacher educators must read this. In all honesty, I could hardly put it down​.

Tania Ferfolja, Associate Professor, School of Education, Centre for Educational Research, Western Sydney University, Australia 

Our Children Are Your Students is part teaching, part research, part art, and 100% devoted to improving the quality of the lives of LGBTQ students and their families. Goldstein (and her fellow authors) have an ear for beautiful words, creating theatre from family testimonies of struggle and joy within our education system.  If teachers, professors, and community professionals are serious about following human rights laws for the inclusion of LGBTQ families, they should open up this book. If LGBTQ families want to feel less alone, they can find their loving stories within the pages

Karleen Pendleton Jiménez, Professor, School of Education, Gender and Social Justice, Trent University, Canada 

Teaching Gender and Sexuality at School:

Letters to Teachers (2019)

In this set of letters to teachers, I address a full range of issues facing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) students and families at elementary and secondary school. I talk to teachers about how they can support the LGBTQ students and families by normalizing LGBTQ lives in the curriculum, challenging homophobic and transphobic ideas, and building an inclusive school culture that both expects and welcomes LGBTQ students and their families.

In this set of letters to teachers, I address a full range of issues facing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) students and families at elementary and secondary school. I talk to teachers about how they can support the LGBTQ students and families by normalizing LGBTQ lives in the curriculum, challenging homophobic and transphobic ideas, and building an inclusive school culture that both expects and welcomes LGBTQ students and their families.

Reviews

‘Reading this book is like taking a late afternoon walk with Tara through the incredible archive of stories, research data, resources and relationships that she has lovingly created and curated over the course of her landmark career. There is teaching here, but it is not didactic. The book doesn’t tell teachers what to do. Rather, it engages teachers as they are: people negotiating all kinds of different issues, views and needs while working towards a classroom environment that does less harm to everyone in the name of how gender and sexuality are ‘supposed’ to go. There are as many ways into the work here as there are ways of living gender and sexuality.’

—Dr. Lee Airton, Assistant Professor of Gender and Sexuality Studies in Education, Queen’s University and author of Gender – Your Guide: A Gender-Friendly Primer on What to Know, What to Say and What to Do in the New Gender Culture.

Women Writing Letters:

Seasons 1, 2, 3 and 4 (2013, 2014, 2015)

Over the four seasons of Women Writing Letters, a literary performance series curated by Gailey Road Productions (2011-2015) sixty-one women identifying writers and artists wrote and performed a variety of letters on a variety of topics sharing experiences of everyday life.  The series featured both established and up-and-coming writers reviving the art of letter writing.

Over the four seasons of Women Writing Letters, a literary performance series curated by Gailey Road Productions (2011-2015) sixty-one women identifying writers and artists wrote and performed a variety of letters on a variety of topics sharing experiences of everyday life.  The series featured both established and up-and-coming writers reviving the art of letter writing.

Season 1

A Letter to the Night I’d Rather Forget

A Letter to My ______ Birthday Ever
A Letter to the Things I Never Told My Mother
A Letter to My Nemesis

Season 2

A Letter to God

A Letter to My 12-Year-Old Self
A Letter to My First Boss
A Letter to The Best Present I Ever Received

Season 3

A Letter to the Teacher I’ll Never Forget
A Letter to My Hometown
A Letter to My First-Year University Self
A Letter to My 16-Year Old Self
A Letter to My Queer Family

Season 4

A Letter to the Road I Didn’t Travel
A Letter to My Grandmother
A Letter to My 18-Year-Old Self

Teaching and Learning in a Multilingual School:

Choices, Risks and Dilemmas (2003)

Teaching and Learning in a Multilingual School: Choices, Risks, and Dilemmas is a book for teachers and teacher educators working in communities that educate children who do not speak English as a first language. At the center of the book are findings from a four-year critical ethnographic case study of a Canadian high school with a large number of immigrant students from Hong Kong and rich descriptions of the multitude of ways teachers and students thought about, responded to, and negotiated the issues and dilemmas that arose. The solutions and insights they derived from their experiences of working across linguistic, cultural, and racial differences will be of interest to educators in other locales that have become home to large numbers of immigrant families. The book is designed to help readers think about how the issues and dilemmas in the case study manifest themselves in their own communities and how to apply the insights they gain to their own teaching and learning contexts.  Includes the performed ethnography Hong Kong, Canada.

Teaching and Learning in a Multilingual School: Choices, Risks, and Dilemmas is a book for teachers and teacher educators working in communities that educate children who do not speak English as a first language. At the center of the book are findings from a four-year critical ethnographic case study of a Canadian high school with a large number of immigrant students from Hong Kong and rich descriptions of the multitude of ways teachers and students thought about, responded to, and negotiated the issues and dilemmas that arose. The solutions and insights they derived from their experiences of working across linguistic, cultural, and racial differences will be of interest to educators in other locales that have become home to large numbers of immigrant families. The book is designed to help readers think about how the issues and dilemmas in the case study manifest themselves in their own communities and how to apply the insights they gain to their own teaching and learning contexts.  Includes the performed ethnography Hong Kong, Canada.

Weaving Connections:

Educating for Peace, Social and Environmental Justice. (2000)

Edited with my colleague David Selby at the beginning of a new century, Weaving Connections is a call to action by progressive educators to teach and live in respect and balance

Edited with my colleague David Selby at the beginning of a new century, Weaving Connections is a call to action by progressive educators to teach and live in respect and balance.

Two Languages at Work:

Bilingual Life on the Production Floor (1997)

Two Languages at Work (1997) is an ethnography about language use, identity and economic survival and mobility in a Canadian multicultural, multilingual workplace. By examining the context of second language learning, I encourage researchers and teachers to re-examine assumptions about how to best help students in the process of learning a second language.

Two Languages at Work (1997) is an ethnography about language use, identity and economic survival and mobility in a Canadian multicultural, multilingual workplace. By examining the context of second language learning, I encourage researchers and teachers to re-examine assumptions about how to best help students in the process of learning a second language.

gaileyroad@gmail.com

Image credit: benjamin lee hicks (2019)

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