Incite with Insight: How to talk about unrest, discrimination, and polarized views in the classroom

Our classrooms are often places where the difficult conversations and questions begin. 


"What does inciting an insurrection mean?" 

"Why are people upset with each other in our country?"

"Will this happen again?" 


The questions come, and sometimes answering them can be difficult.  Let's discuss ways to ignite our students' critical thinking skills.  We will share insightful ways that we are managing our classrooms through this time of unrest and polarized views. 


Come join an interactive presentation and conversation with other educators in a unique professional learning virtual community.




Toni Graves Williamson is a nationally recognized diversity practitioner and consultant, now serving as Director of Equity and Inclusion at Friends Select School in Philadelphia. She specializes in developing student leadership and programming for grades PK-12.  She is a founding faculty member of the National Diversity Practitioners Institute, and has served on the faculty of the Student Diversity Leadership Conference.  She is the co-founder of the Mid-Atlantic Region Diversity Conference, a conference for high school students and adults, now in its 9th year.  Using her knowledge of organizational change management, she conducts diversity climate studies and trains educators in cultural competency and best practices.  Additionally, Toni provides professional development opportunities for Quaker schools through a partnership with the Friends Council on Education.  Toni completed a fellowship for the Program in Education at Duke University that focused on Education through the Lens of Social Justice.  She continues to lead trips for college students through the South to study the Civil Rights Movement and its impact on the world today.  Toni is a principal consultant of the Glasgow Group, a consortium of school educators that provide professional development and coaching to schools and other organizations.  She is co-director and facilitator for The Race Institute for K-12 Educators and is a contributing author to The Guide for White Women Who Teach Black Boys (2017 Corwin Press) and the soon to be released Teaching Beautiful Brilliant Black Girls (2021 Corwin Press)She is currently working on another writing project to support youth in their understanding of racism. Toni holds a bachelor's degree from Duke University in Political Science and two masters of education degrees, one from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and the other from Columbia University. 


Jan Riggsbee is a professor in Duke’s Program in Education and co-founder and director of Duke TeachHouse, a first-of-its-kind living and learning community for beginning teachers focused on teacher leadership and school innovation. She also directs one of Duke’s teacher licensure programs. As a senior faculty member, she served two terms as director of the Program in Education and co-led the Teacher Learning and Collaboration initiative, a six-year district-wide teacher leadership program funded by Duke’s President. Prior to Duke, Riggsbee worked in K-12 education as a classroom teacher, principal, head of school, and curriculum consultant. Her research interests focus on teacher mentoring and professional development, school curricula and reform, school leadership, and community-based learning. Honors include the Trinity College Distinguished Teaching Award.


Gerrelyn Patterson earned a BA in English Literature from North Carolina Central University, a MEd in English Education from the University of Virginia, and PhD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  She has more than 20 years of P-12 and post-secondary experience as a literature and composition instructor and teacher educator. Her research involves adding to the body of work on school desegregation in North Carolina and using service learning pedagogy to prepare culturally responsive teachers. Currently, she is an Associate Professor at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University where she serves as chair of the Department of Educator Preparation.


Professor Edna Andrews is the Nancy and Jeffrey Marcus Distinguished Professor at Duke University. She is a Professor of Linguistics and Cultural Anthropology, Chair of the Linguistics Program and a member of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience and the Duke Institute for Brain Sciences.  She also directs the Duke Focus Program. Professor Andrews is the author of numerous books, articles, and studies in cognitive neuroscience, linguistics, and semiotics.  Her current research includes an extensive longitudinal fMRI study of second language acquisition, life-long musicianship and multilingualism and new approaches to embodied cognition in languages and music.




Event Date: 
Thursday, March 18, 2021 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm
Incite with Insight event flyer
Event Contact: 
Cathy Lewis
Event Contact Email: 
Event Contact Phone: 
Event Speaker: 
Toni Graves Williamson, Jan Riggsbee, Gerrelyn Patterson, and Edna Andrews