Sister Mary Gertrude Hennessey is an elementary school administrator at Saint Ann’s School in Stoughton, Wisconsin. Previously she taught science to students in grades 1 through 6. In addition to challenging existing theories of child development, Dr. Hennessey worked with the Harvard University Graduate School of Education on a study designed to test the claim that elementary school students can make significant progress in developing a sophisticated, constructivist epistemology of science, given a sustained elementary school science curriculum designed to support their thinking about epistemological issues. She has also conducted a multiyear study to describe the multifaceted nature of young students’ metacognitive abilities. She is a founding member and past president of Wisconsin Elementary Science Teachers. She has collaborated with researchers from such institutions as the Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Astrophysics, the University of Maryland’s Physics Education Research Group, the Ohio State University, the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory, and the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She has received numerous national and state awards for excellence in science teaching. She has a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.


Sarah Michaels is professor of education and senior research scholar at the Jacob Hiatt Center for Urban Education at Clark University. A sociolinguist by training, she has been actively involved in teaching and research in the area of language, culture, “multiliteracies,” and the discourses of math and science. She was the founding director of the Hiatt Center for Urban Education and works to bring together teacher education, educational research on classroom discourse, and district-based efforts at education reform. She is currently involved in rethinking teacher education and professional development so that it focuses central attention on rigorous, coherent, and equitable classroom discourse. Michaels is a coauthor of the CD-ROM suite of tools Accountable Talk: Classroom Conversation That Works (in collaboration with the Institute for Learning at the University of Pittsburgh), which is currently being used in large urban districts throughout the country. In promoting teacher research, she works to support teachers as theorizers, curriculum innovators, and education leaders who use the tools of ethnography and discourse analysis in generating new and usable knowledge for improving instruction and student learning in their own and others’ classrooms. Michaels has published widely in the area of classroom discourse analysis, has received numerous awards for both teaching and scholarship, and serves on a wide range of review boards for journals, book series, and educational foundations. Prior to joining Clark in 1990, Michaels



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