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A Fall Hello...and Re-Introduction

Dear community:

I've had a lot of new folx joining in on the Reading Is Resistance action, so I'm re-introducing myself! Take a read below, and let me know what questions you have? I'm happy to do a Q & A post upcoming 🙂

Name: Zapoura Rose Newton-Calvert

Pronouns: she/her

Where I live: On Cowlitz Land (settler named Portland, Oregon) between the Willamette and Wimahl Rivers (settler named Columbia).

My Ancestors: My ancestors on my biological dad's side are from Italy/Greece and Sweden. They migrated in the late 1800s. My ancestors on my biological mom's side are immigrants from Germany, settler colonists from France/Scotland, and Anishinaabe (Chippewa/Ojibwe) people from around the Great Lakes.

I come from teachers and union representatives. From people who were harmed by school and by people who worked to create communities of care in schools. I am from artists and laborers.

My favorite book? Don't make me choose. Emergent Strategy by adrienne maree brown is one of my all-time most beloved books and most read. It has lots of marked pages and underlines. As for fiction, I revisiting the work of Christina Soontornvat and have to say that her A Wish in the Dark is one of my absolute favorites. In terms of non-fiction, Stamped for Young Readers by Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds is everything!

My work: I am the co-founder of Reading Is Resistance and an Assistant Teaching Professor at Portland State University. I teach two main community-based courses: Social Justice in K-12 Education and Anti-Bias Education. And up soon, I'll be offering some courses with PDUs from the Heritage Institute!

I've written a few articles and chapters for academic sources:

  • Online Community-Based Learning as the Practice of Freedom: The Online Capstone Experience at Portland State UniversityDeborah Smith Arthur and Zapoura Newton-Calvert

  • A chapter on community-based learning for High Impact Practice in Online Education, edited by Katie Linder and Chrysanthemum Hayes

  • An upcoming chapter “Rooting Our Teaching in the Change Around Us: Growing an Anti-Racist, Community Interdependent Course Model" in the book Composition and Rhetoric in Contentious Times

  • And I'm writing a chapter right now called "Adapting “Community-Based” Learning to “Community-Interdependent” Practice: How Emergent Strategy Guided Us Through Fracture and into Change" for a book on teaching through the pandemic.

I love to write curriculum on children's books and to facilitate conversations for all ages of people interested in liberation. I also enjoy hosting workshops and silent book club meetings -- yes, silent!

Favorite Color: Black and Rainbow (I know, that doesn't count)

Favorite Article of Clothing: overalls

Favorite Fall Activity: drinking coffee and sitting in the bright morning light (until it starts raining...I do live in Portland!)

How I Relax: Napping with my chiweenies.

So, there's a little snapshot of me. I hope it lets you know a little bit more about the human behind all of this curriculum and book love.

I am always excited to support your efforts out in the world, so let me know what you all are up to and how we can collaborate.

Take care, dear ones,



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