The RESEARCH

Human Restoration Project explores a variety of progressive thought to move all learners toward humanity through passion, service, and empowerment.

We recommend starting with writings by any of these educators: Linda Darling-Hammond, John Dewey, Susan Engel, Paulo Freire, Henry Giroux, John Holt, bell hooks, Alfie Kohn, Jonathan Kozol, Deborah Meier, Maria Montessori, and Jean Piaget. We welcome criticism and remain open to dialogue on expanding our viewpoints further.

Interested in crowdsourcing the largest collection of progressive education research on the Internet? Submit a book, article, or research study.

Please report broken links to us. All research should be looked at through a critical lens, many research studies fail to be replicated or have mixed results.

we recommend...

Teaching More by Grading Less (or Differently)

Ungrading

Schinske & Tanner

2017

This extensive article summarizes the history, research, and strategies for ungrading in the classroom. If we want to improve assessment, why don't we start by grading less? Creating a more collaborative space, focusing on effort-based grading, moving away from grade curves, and increasing skepticism about grades are highlighted.
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Graduation by Portfolio at Central Park East Secondary School

Darling-Hammond & Ancess

1994

Ungrading
Book
$

A full overview of how Central Park East (Deborah Meier) uses a portfolio system to assess student graduation.

Pedagogy of the Anxious: Rethinking Critical Pedagogy in the Context of Neoliberal Autonomy and Responsibilization

De Lissovoy

2017

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Article
$

De Lissovoy interrogates the meaning and implications of Freire's "Pedagogy of the Oppressed" in the light of the neoliberal 21st century fragmentation of society and individuals.

Motivation and Education: The Self-Determination Perspective

Deci

1991

Self-Determination
Article
$

An overview of self-determination theory and how its incorporation in school showcases a heavily increased level of learning.

Facilitating Optimal Motivation and Psychological Well-Being Across Life’s Domains

Deci & Ryan

2008

Self-Determination
Research Study
$

Relates research between motivation and intrinsic objectives to deeper understanding of subject matter.

Intrinsic Motivation and Self-Determination in Human Behavior

Deci & Ryan

1985

Self-Determination
Article
$

Provides details on the need for self-determination and competence, laying out the necessary requirements for people to achieve each.

Extrinsic Rewards and Intrinsic Motivation in Education: Reconsidered Once Again

Deci et. al.

2001

Self-Determination
Research Study
$

Provides evidence that extrinsic rewards have a damaging effect on intrinsic motivation.

The Lives of Children: The Story of the First Street School

Dennison

1999

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

An inspiring look at how Dennison leads students towards positive outcomes through an authentic "human" education at the First Street School.

Excellent Sheep: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania

Deresiewicz

2014

Book of the Month
Book
$

Exemplifies the issues of prestigious-college seeking youth, our obsession with “being the best”, and what education truly means.

Anti-Bias Curriculum: Tools for Empowering Young Children

Derman-Sparks

1989

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Book
$

Showcases research and case studies at implementing anti-bias curriculum in the classroom.

Experience and Education

Dewey

1938

Experiential Learning
Book
$

A fundamental overview of experiential learning and one of the originators of progressive education.

The Power in Our Hands: A Curriculum on the History of Work and Workers in the United States

Diamond & Bigelow

1988

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

A series of lesson plans on teaching labor movements.

Grit: Perseverance and Passion for Long-Term Goals

Duckworth

2007

Cooperation and Soft Skills
Research Study
$

Research shows how grit is a general indicator of success. Notably, however, is that grit is defined as a individual's perseverance and a passion for a long-term goal.

Who Owns Learning?: Questions of Autonomy, Choice, and Control

Dudley-Marling & Searle

1995

Self-Determination
Book
$

A range of interviews talking about teachers giving up power to allow for choice within their classrooms.

An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States for Young People

Dunbar-Ortiz

2019

Book of the Month
Book
$

Consistently poses questions that counteract misinformation about Native communities, specifically stories that are usually taught in elementary school

URBAN YOUTH AND THE COUNTER-NARRATION OF INEQUALITY

Duncan-Andrade

2007

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Article
$

Highlights a program of a digital literacy program centered on poor students of color.

Your Best Friend or Your Worst Enemy: Youth Popular Culture, Pedagogy, and Curriculum in Urban Classrooms

Duncan-Andrade & M.R.

2004

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Research Study
$

An argument for youth cultural literacies and application in the classroom.

The Art of Critical Pedagogy: Possibilities for Moving from Theory to Practice in Urban Schools

Duncan-Andrade & Morrell

2008

Book of the Month
Book
$

An overview of the concept of critical pedagogy, showcases why it is needed in urban contexts, and provides three case studies of what it actually looks like in practice.

An A Is Not An A Is Not An A: A History Of Grading

Durm

1993

Ungrading
Article
$

A history of grading from the early 20th century, showcasing what assumptions and ideas have existed about grades and assessment.

Mindsets That Promote Resilience: When Students Believe That Personal Characteristics Can Be Developed

Dweck & Yeager

2012

Cooperation and Soft Skills
Article
$

A basis for “growth mindset” - a review of research studies showcasing how students who believe that intellectual abilities can be developed (rather than fixed) have higher achievement rates.

The interplay of scientific epistemological views, learning strategies, and attitudes of college students

Edmondson & Novak

1993

Purpose-Finding
Research Study
$

This paper focuses on research that illustrates the important interplay between students' scientific epistemological views and their learning strategies.

Why Doesn't This Feel Empowering? Working Through the Repressive Myths of Critical Pedagogy

Ellsworth

1989

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Research Study
$

Demonstrates the issues of implementing education for liberation, and provides a critique for "empowerment."

Children's Need to Know: Curiosity in Schools

Engel

2011

General Progressive Pedagogy
Article
$

An essay supporting the need for children's inquiry, socialization, and natural curiosity to be embraced and focused on by schools.

The End of the Rainbow: How Educating for Happiness (Not Money) Would Transform Our Schools

Engel

2016

Book of the Month
Book
$

A deeply researched account of how America's schools are aimed at wealth as opposed to educational pursuits.

The Hungry Mind: The Origins of Curiosity in Childhood

Engel

2015

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

Author provides a deep overview of the origins and cultivation of curiosity.

The Intellectual Lives of Children

Engel

2021

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

Explains how young children see and understand the world, showcasing their brilliance and ability to perceive new ideas.

RANGE: WHY GENERALISTS TRIUMPH IN A SPECIALIZED WORLD

Epstein

2019

Book of the Month
Book
$

Analyzes the question: Do specialists actually get better with experience or not, and is narrow, deliberate practice the only way to achieve greatness in a given field?

The Case Against High Stakes Testing

Fairtest

2017

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Article
$

A collection of articles, research studies, and expert discussion on the misuse of standardized testing.

Making the Grades: MY MISADVENTURES IN THE STANDARDIZED TESTING INDUSTRY

Farley

2011

Book of the Month
Book
$

A journey of over a decade in the testing industry. Starting as a simple scorer, Farley works his way through the ranks to reigning as a testing consultant — despite all of the deplorable events he witnesses.

Silencing in Public Schools

Fine

1987

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Article
$

Showcases how certain words and topics are pressured to not be covered in public schools from various sources.

The ‘how’ and ‘why’ of the classroom

Fisher

2021

Self-Determination
Article
$

This article powerfully challenges the popular cognitive science-backed direct instruction approach to schooling.

Classroom Social Experiences as Predictors of Academic Performance

Flook et al.

2005

General Progressive Pedagogy
Research Study
$

Study shows how lack of peer acceptance in 4th grade led to increasingly negative academic outcomes to 6th grade (and possibly beyond), identifying a need for teachers to build relationships between students.

Education for Critical Consciousness

Freire

1973

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Further inquiry into the concept of "critical pedagogy" and how one's perspective and life situation needs a raised consciousness to understand and change the system they're apart of.

Learning to Question: A Pedagogy of Liberation

Freire

1989

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Freire's argument of using the techniques of critical pedagogy to specifically liberate oppressed societies.

Pedagogy of the City

Freire

1993

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

An application of Pedagogy of the Oppressed with specifically the urban poor.

Pedagogy of the Oppressed

Freire

1970

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

The basis of "critical pedagogy" - analyzing how the teacher/student relationship has become similar to colonization models, and our need for teachers to work "with" students rather than "at" students.

The Politics of Education: Culture, Power, and Liberation

Freire

1985

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Showcases the activist, "Freire" approach to transformative change in the classroom.

The “Banking” Concept of Education

Freire

1968

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Details how the view of students as passive receivers of information can corrupt and misalign the goals of the education system.

Pedagogy for liberation: dialogues on transforming education

Freire & Shor

1987

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Highlights the need for “humanization” of the classroom and how teachers can connect to students’ lived experiences.

Teachers As Cultural Workers: Letters to Those Who Dare Teach

Freire et. al.

2005

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Essays by Freire and various contemporary theorists on lessons learned in teaching liberatory learning.

The Labor of Lunch: Why We Need Real Food and Real Jobs in American Public Schools

Gaddis

2019

Book of the Month
Book
$

A treatise on the United States school lunch system: its history, battle over nutritional quality, and those who are fighting to change it.

Readicide

Gallagher

2009

Promoting Literacy
Book
$

A well-written account of how school programs that are meant to encourage reading actually hinder and destroy a love of reading, in-turn decreasing reading comprehension.

Where Students Get Valued Advice on What to Study in College

Gallop

2017

Experiential Learning
Article
$

Outlines how students choose what their college major will be and based on findings, recommends that students are exposed to more internships & experiences to find greater purpose.

Radical Hope: A Teaching Manifesto

Gannon

2020

Book of the Month
Book
$

Frames the transactional, market-oriented, outcomes-focus of modern higher ed. institutions as befitting “classrooms of death”, borrowing symbolism from 19th century Danish folk school leader Nikolai Grundtvig.

Who's in Control? Is There Enough "Empowerment" to Go Around?

Garan

1994

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Research Study
$

A teacher's study of being a participant observer in an English classroom, resisting the temptation to enact control.

The role of early career supports, continuous professional development, and learning communities in the teacher shortage

Garcia & Weiss

2019

Supporting Teachers and PD Reform
Research Study
$

Demonstrates the need for quality professional development amongst a growing teacher shortage. Finds that only 11% of teachers have a say in their professional development.

GoodWork: Theory and Practice

Gardner

2010

Purpose-Finding
Article
$

An extensive look at what it means to work in “Good Work” - or work that has purpose, meaning, and intrinsically motivated goals. Written by a collection of experts on purpose.

Metal Detectors and Feeling Safe at School

Gastic

2010

Restorative Justice
Article
$

This article argues that metal detectors bestow an organizational stigma to schools.

Culturally Responsive Teaching: Theory, Research, and Practice

Gay

2010

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Book
$

An overview of how teachers should implement and inform equity-centered and progressive classrooms. (The attached link is Chapter 7, on how to inform and introduce students to this style of learning.)

Character strengths predict subjective well-being during adolescence

Gillham et. al.

2011

Purpose-Finding
Research Study
$

Research finds that 9th and 10th grade students had greater life satisfaction and less depressive symptoms when they found meaning and love in their lives.

Prekindergarteners Left Behind: Expulsion Rates in State Prekindergarten Systems

Gilliam

2005

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Research Study
$

The first comprehensive study of 3,898 prekindergarten classrooms across 40 states into the expulsion rates in state prekindergarten systems.

Teacher and Child: A Book for Parents and Teachers

Ginott

1972

Book of the Month
Book
$

Outlines the day-to-day interactions teachers have with children, offering suggestions to solve the minute interactions that encompass most of this profession.

How Testing Came to Dominate American Schools

Giordano

2005

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Book
$

An overview of the history of the high-stakes testing system.

Border Crossings: Cultural Workers and the Politics of Education

Giroux

1992

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

A series of essays discussing post-modernism, feminism, cultural studies, and critical pedagogy.

Neoliberalism's War on Higher Education

Giroux

2019

Public Education
Book
$

Showcases how educational policy has been taken by corporate forces and market-driven philosophies.

On Critical Pedagogy

Giroux

2011

Book of the Month
Book
$

A rejection of the empirical concept of teaching, Giroux analyzes how students have become more like customers than learners.

Rethinking neoliberal fascism, racist violence, and the plague of inequality

Giroux

2021

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Article
$

Political attacks on critical race theory and the 1619 Project, promoting "patriotic education", etc. amount to an attack on academic freedom and normalizes authoritarianism.

Schooling and the Struggle for Public Life

Giroux

2005

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Demonstrates the democratic possibilities of schooling, offering that schools are one of the few places youth can engage in democratic thinking.

Terror of Neoliberalism: Authoritarianism and the Eclipse of Democracy

Giroux

2004

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

An extensive argument of how neoliberal is not just an economic theory, but a form of political and cultural power manifested in education.

The Essential Renewal of America's Schools

Glickman & Mette

2020

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

Demonstrates how building leaders and educators can move away from mandated strict guidelines that often hurt student outcomes.

A Place Called School: Prospects for the Future

Goodlad

1984

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

A four-year study of 1,000 classrooms offering ways to improve the schooling system away from high-stakes testing and moving toward a common set of concepts.

Nonfiction Reading Promotes Student Success

Goodwin & Miller

2013

Promoting Literacy
Article
$

Demonstrates through research that nonfiction reading is integral for student success, yet lacking in school. Suggestions are made to connect nonfiction reading to student interest.

The Value of Play I: The definition of play gives insights

Gray

2008

Free Play
Article
$

Outlines the need and practice of play in schools, including its benefits and definition as "play."

Teacher Stress and Health

Greenberg et. al.

2016

Supporting Teachers and PD Reform
Research Study
$

Finds that teachers report the highest levels of occupational stress, the same as nurses, which impacts the classroom.

Autonomy in Children's Learning: An Experimental and Individual Difference Investigation

Grolnick & Ryan

1987

Self-Determination
Research Study
$

When two groups of students were presented with controlling vs. non-controlled learning, those in a non-controlled (and more autonomous) environment had greater learning outcomes and motivation.When two groups of students were presented with controlling vs. non-controlled learning, those in a non-controlled (and more autonomous) environment had greater learning outcomes and motivation.

Why Does Neo‐Liberalism Hate Kids? The War on Youth and the Culture of Politics

Grossberg

2006

General Progressive Pedagogy
Article
$

Explains the hyper focus on markets' connection to damaging children's outcomes.

Failing Our Children: No Child Left behind Undermines Quality and Equity in Education

Guisbond & Neill

2004

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Article
$

An argument against the implementation of No Child Left Behind and "standardized test scores at any cost" culture.

The Pedagogy of Poverty Versus Good Teaching

Haberman

1991

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Book
$

"It will be formidably difficult to institutionalize new forms of pedagogy for the children of poverty, but it is worthwhile to define and describe such alternatives."

A Brief History of the “Testocracy,” Standardized Testing and Test-Defying

Hagopian

2015

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Article
$

An overview of what testing companies, officials, and policy-makers want from standardized testing and their misunderstandings about the education system.

More Than a Score: The New Uprising Against High-Stakes Testing

Hagopian

2014

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Book
$

Showcases various teachers fighting back against standardized testing, from walk outs to opt outs.

Black Lives Matter at School

Hagopian & Tometi

2020

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Book
$

Demonstrates how educators and activists across the country have challenged institutional racism across the US.

Square pegs in round holes: The mainstream schooling experiences of students with an Autism Spectrum Disorder and their parents

Harrington

2014

General Progressive Pedagogy
Research Study
$

This extensive study of ADHD students in school realizes that ADHD students are often not included or individualized for at school, nor are they readily accepted. It calls on the need for more individualization for every student.

The Work of the Imagination

Harris

2000

Free Play
Book
$

A full overview of the work of imagination, play, and a child's intellectual growth.

Trusting What You’re Told: How Children Learn from Others

Harris

2015

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

Demonstrates how much of what children learn about the world is from other people.

Grading Hampers Cooperative Information Sharing in Group Problem Solving

Hayek

2015

Ungrading
Research Study
$

Experiment demonstrates how when members of a group knew that their contribution would be visible and graded, they shared less relevant information, in comparison to someone who was not expecting a contribution grade

Why we teach: A conversation with Sonia Nieto

Heller

2020

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Article
$

A conversation on the need to identify one's purpose as an educator to fight for social justice.

Manufacturing Consent

Herman & Chomsky

2002

General Progressive Pedagogy
Book
$

A high-level overview of how the news media makes citizens view the world in a certain way, with specific segments on the view of public life and education.

Uses and Misuses of Data for Educational Accountability and Improvement

Herman & Haertel

2005

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Article
$

A complete synthesis of how testing accountability structures are built and why their dataset is limited.

Does Studying Student Data Really Raise Test Scores?

Hill

2020

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Article
$

A breakdown of why standardized test prep does little to nothing in actually impacting achievement.

Understanding the pathways to purpose: Examining personality and well-being correlates across adulthood

Hill et. al.

2014

Purpose-Finding
Research Study
$

Notes that those who are proactive at finding their purpose in life have greater emotional/social well-being, as well as a greater agency in comparison to those whose purpose came about on its own.

How Children Fail

Holt

1964

Self-Determination
Book
$

This book analyzes how traditional education has led to the destruction of learning by students, ruining their natural sense of discovery they were born with.

What do I do Monday?

Holt

1995

Self-Determination
Book
$

An overview of Holt's methodology of best teaching practice, encouraging students to learn on their own.

Moving On Up: Teaching With the Data of Economic Mobility

Honner

2018

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Article
$

Data from childhood to adulthood on how different levels of SES and race affect someone’s chances of economic mobility.

Colleges Want Students with Character, But Can’t Measure It

Hoover

2014

Eliminating Standardized Testing
Research Study
$

Interviews and analysis of how colleges no longer feel standardized tests are valid measures of academic progress, and are looking for ways to measure soft skills.

Restorative Justice in Schools

Hopkins

2002

Restorative Justice
Article
$

How to use restorative justice in the classroom with research to back up its practice.

The Hidden Impact of COVID-19 on Educators

Horace Mann

2020

Supporting Teachers and PD Reform
Research Study
$

The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted teacher finances & benefit gaps. This survey data & analysis also shares key findings about teacher well-being.

We Make the Road by Walking: Conversations on Education and Social Change

Horton & Freire

1990

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Horton and Freire discuss a pedagogy for liberation from two radically different backgrounds, offering insights on collective struggle and change-making.

Labor Based Grading Contracts: Building Equity and Inclusion in the Compassionate Writing Classroom

Inoue

2019

Ungrading
Book
$

A complete work over the use of labor-based grading contracts, a more holistic way of assessment in lieu of the traditional grading scale.

Solutionary Guidebook

Institute for Humane Education

2020

Experiential Learning
Book
$

A free resource on promoting student social justice and activism, themed around experiential learning.

Emotion Knowledge and Emotion Utilization Facilitate School Readiness

Izard

2002

Social Emotional Learning
Article
$

"Although largely ignored for a long time, we have known for decades that children’s emotion knowledge (EK) contributes to their ability to regulate their emotions and behavior. "

Bored Out of Their Minds

Jason

2017

Self-Determination
Research Study
$

Emphasis on standardized tests, fading novelty, lack of motivation, and increasingly regimented school structures contribute to a decline in engagement as kids progress through school.

Beyond the School Walls: A Critical Action Research Study Examining the Perils and Promise of Critical Teacher Engagement

Jimenez-Castellanos

2010

Supporting Teachers and PD Reform
Article
$

This paper analyses the demographic data of California K-12 schools, proposes a cross-disciplinary theoretical framework for critical teacher engagement, and concludes with an argument for critical teacher engagement where teachers are seen as intellectuals and public cultural workers.

Making Cooperative Learning Work

Johnson & Johnson

1999

Cooperation and Soft Skills
Article
$

Discusses implementation of cooperative learning, which is shown to have greater outcomes in student achievement than competitive learning.

Community in the Classroom: An Approach to Curriculum and Instruction as a Means for the Development of Student Cognitive, Social and Emotional Engagement in a High School Classroom

Jones

2012

Cooperation and Soft Skills
Research Study
$

A detailed analysis of how relationship building - specifically a focus on social and emotional engagement - led to drastically increased academic performance.

Ending Curriculum Violence

Jones

2020

Anti-Racism & Social Justice
Article
$

A breakdown of how white supremacist curriculum hurts students and what we can do to change it.

In Providing Supports for Students, Language Matters

Jung

2017

Second Language Acquisition
Article
$

Demonstrates how educators should understand and utilize different language between accommodations and modifications.

We Do This 'Til We Free Us

Kaba

2021

Book of the Month
Book
$

A perfect encapsulation of understanding the carceral network, the importance of organizing, and counteracting inhumane systems.

Critical Pedagogy: An Introduction

Kanpol

1999

Critical Pedagogy and Power
Book
$

Offers a theoretical overview of the concept of critical pedagogy: changing the structure of school to end oppression, in a simpler language that Freire or Giroux.

Why Do Teachers of Color Leave at Higher Rates Than White Teachers?

Kaput

2019

Supporting Teachers and PD Reform
Research Study
$

A summary of the research and survey data about why teachers of Color leave the profession and what successful districts have done to retain and diversify their teaching staff.

Schools Are Missing What Matters About Learning

Kaufman

2017

Cooperation and Soft Skills
Article
$

An overview of the need for curiosity in schools, featuring research and interviews with experts.

Students with Anxiety in the Classroom: Educational Accommodations and Interventions

Killu & Crundwell

2016

General Progressive Pedagogy
Article
$

Showcases how anxiety can be crippling for students and have an impact on their academic performance (not ability). Teachers should empathize and build support structures to help students suffering from anxiety.

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