Thursday, September 27, 2007


Dear reader(s),

With guidance from our own homegrown genius, Dr. Ellen Riojas Clark, we have set out to create lesson plans highlighting the contributions of Latino MacArthur (los MacArturos) fellowship award recipients. We hope you enjoy exploring this site and find our lesson plans useful as reference material for your classroom. Although we have tried to incorporate as many aspects as we deemed necessary, should you find any gaps or oversights that require changes, please do not hesitate to let us know. As you can see, we are open to suggestions and welcome your constructive comments.

We hope you enjoy this site. Its contents reference links from many other very interesting sources for teachers, as well as for the general public, who might be interested in further investigating the MacArturos.


Carmen, Claudia, Irma, Jessica, Lora Beth, Lorena, Malena, and Dr. Clark


Carmen Guzman-Martinez

Carmen is currently a doctoral student in the Bicultural-Bilingual Studies department. She was born and raised in San Antonio, TX. Her research interests include cultural studies, critical pedagogy, promotoras, and community based organizations. She is involved in UTSA's Mexican American Studies Student Organization (MASSO) and the National Association for Chicano and Chicana Studies (NACCS). She also works as a teaching assistant in the department and has taught BBL 3403-Cultural and Linguistic Diversity in a Pluralistic Society and BBL 3033-Mexican Americans in the Southwest.


Claudia Treviño-García
Loca, Dreamer and Visionary: Claudia Treviño García is a first generation Mexicana/Chicana. She has a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with Bilingual/ESL Education Certification and an M.A. In Bicultural-Bilingual Education, both from the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). She taught 13 years in the San Antonio Independent School District, 10 of which were at Storm Elementary, a Dual Language Campus. She is currently in her second year of her doctoral studies at the UTSA. Her research interests include, teacher retention, pre-service teacher preparation, induction year support and teacher ethnic identity. She is currently the Assistant Director for the Academy for Teacher Excellence. She currently lives in San Antonio, Texas with her husband Gus and their three children Gustavo (18), Carolina (17) and Jonathan (12).


Irma Vargas Rosas

Irma Vargas Rosas is first generation Chicana, born and raised in Chicago, IL. She has three degrees from the University of IL, Chicago. She obtained a B.A. in Political Science and Spanish in 1996. Then she continued and obtained two masters degrees: an M.A. in Hispanic Studies specializing in Applied Linguistics in 1998 and M.Ed. specializing in Bilingual Education in 2003. She was a classroom teacher for several years in Chicago and in San Antonio, Texas and has experience in dual language, transitional bilingual, and ESL programs. She is currently a doctoral student in the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Texas, San Antonio in the Culture, Literacy, and Language Program. She currently lives in San Antonio with her partner Rita and their two perritos Corbatín and Lalito.


Jessica Muniz

Jessica B. Muniz, LMSW is currently a doctoral student in the Bicultural-Bilingual Studies department. She was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas and has lived here her entire life. She currently works at UTSA as a psychotherapist in the Counseling Services department. She received her BA in 1998 and her MSW in 2001 from OLLU. Jessica is the proud mother of 4 children ages 18, 16, 11, and 8 and is happily married to Ben. The identity of being mother, wife, professional, student, and Latina is the focus of research that Jessica wishes to investigate, hence her decision to pursue a PhD in Culture, Language and Literacy. How do Latinas continuously live within the borders of their daily lives and still maintain a sense of identity independent from the cultural worlds that define their gender roles? These lived experiences are interwoven daily as Jessica navigates her life. Specifically Jessica has become interested in studying gender and culture and its impact on the educational paths that Latinas follow. Jessica is interested in narratives or testimonios of young Latinas who continue to pursue higher education and how that success changes their lived experiences. If Jessica had time and money for a hobby, she would spend time traveling!


Lora Beth Escalante

Lora Beth is a doctoral student in the Bilingual-Bicultural Department at the University of Texas at San Antonio.Previously, she taught third grade in a bilingual classroom for five years with Denver Public Schools and has participatedin district-wide curriculum development. Her teaching passion is second language acquisition and teacher professional development.


Lorena Claeys

I was born in Laredo Texas and raised in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, México. I moved to Corpus Christi, TX at the age of 15. I graduated from Del Mar College with an Associate of Arts Degree. I also obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and Masters’ Degrees in Curriculum & Instruction and Educational Administration from Texas A&M University. I taught ESL through the content areas of mathematics and science to middle level recent immigrant students at Martin Middle School’s New Comer Program entitled CALP in Corpus Christi ISD. As a coordinator and director I have managed and directed the implementation of Title III/VII, Title V and Transition to Teaching programs. Presently, my research interest as a PhD doctoral student and executive director for the Academy for Teacher Excellence at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) is in the area of educator preparation. Specifically, my studies focus on protective factors, motives and assets for the purpose of designing effective interventions for the preparation and retention of minority and other teacher candidates who work with culturally and linguistically diverse students.


Malena Salazar

As a former English language learner, fully recognizing the difficulties involved in acquiring a new language, I am cognizant of the need to include cultural studies within the teaching profession, hence my interest in pursuing a Ph.D. in the areas of culture, literacy and language. Not surprisingly, my research interests are varied but tightly interlaced, woven into a fabric that incorporates culture, identity, language, and technology. To me these things are inseparable, in today’s world they go hand in hand as many of the lesson plans herein attest. My hobbies and habits are many, among the good ones is a need to document through photography (on any given day, I’ll be carrying some kind of camera), among the bad ones is my pack-rattiness…but then again, I’m an ESL teacher/ethnographer in perpetual training.


Dr. Ellen Riojas Clark

Dr. Ellen Riojas Clark is a Professor in the Division of Bicultural Bilingual Studies at the University of Texas at San Antonio. She has written extensively on the relationship between the constructs of self-concept, ethnic identity, self-efficacy and good teaching. Another area of research is in the area of gifted language minority students. She has developed and presented many graduate summer institutes at UTSA that focused on Latino literature and culture, multicultural education collaborative approaches, curriculum development, cooperative learning and restructuring schools for language minority students.

Dr. Clark serves as the Research Coordinator for the Academy for Teacher Excellence, U.S. Department of Education projects. And has served as the Co-PI for the Rockefeller Foundation Project: Knowledge, Culture, and Construction of Identity in a Transnational Community: San Antonio, TX and was the Educational Content Director for the Scholastic Entertainment PBS children's cartoon series, Maya and Miguel.

She is a native San Antonian where she attended public schools including Edison High School, San Antonio College, Trinity University, UTSA, and the University of Texas at Austin where she received her Ph. D. She is the mother of two engineer daughters and the abuela of four granddaughters. Dr. Clark is one of the Dos Abuelas who write book reviews and travel articles for the Express-News.

Dr. Clark was selected as Queen Huevo by the San Anto Cultural Center and has appeared in several documentaries including Hollydays on PBS, where you can see her every Christmas making her famous tamales.

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