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TC Faculty in Print


TC's faculty in print

Nutrition Education:
Linking Research, Theory and Practice

Isobel R. Contento

(Jones and Bartlett Publishers, 2007)

Change Your Diet? Change Your Attitude, First

The last thing Americans need is another diet book, according to Isobel Contento, TC's Mary Swartz Rose Professor of Nutrition and Education: "Americans are well informed, and, at this point, the grocery stores are full of plenty of health foods. What people lack is the oomph to overcome barriers to changing their behavior. So the field needs behavioral, psychological and educational strategies."

Enter the world's first nutrition education textbook, Contento's Nutrition Education: Linking Research, Theory and Practice.

"The message from the science-based nutrition community has been pretty steady for a while now, and that's basically, -'Eat lots of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, not too many fats, and move around more,'" says Contento, founding director of TC's new Center for Food and the Environment. "This message seems simple, but living it often involves making changes, and people lack the confidence that they are capable of making those changes."

Nutrition educators should work with individuals, families and groups to help them understand why they should take action and how to go about it, Contento asserts. They also should "work with policymakers in schools, worksites, communities, the food industry and the government to make the healthy choice the easy choice--and the affordable one."

Ethical Visions of Education:
Philosophy in Practice

David T. Hansen

(Teachers CollegePress, 2007)

Teaching to Empower

Essays on Educators Who Taught to Make a Difference

As World War II loomed, Japanese educator and philosopher Tsunesaburo Makiguchi exhorted teachers to engage students in genuine dialogue rather than force-feeding them state-sanctioned information. In 1943, his book, Value Creation, was banned, and Japan's Imperial Government threw Makiguchi in jail, where he died of malnutrition.

Yet Makiguchi's ideas live on, as do those of W.E.B. Du Bois, Paolo Freire, Tao Xingzhi, Albert Schweitzer and others. In Ethical Visions of Education: Philosophies in Practice, edited by David Hansen, TC Professor of Philosophy and Education, Hansen and other contributors present those thinkers' ideas as inspiration for current educators to change the world.

Du Bois, for example, wrote that liberal education would equip blacks to challenge and undermine racism. Tao Xingzhi, the father of modern Chinese education, wanted students to approach daily life with intelligence, imagination and resolve. And Freire, the Brazilian philosopher and educator, favored empowering students to think and act critically, rather than simply "depositing" information in their minds.

In the book's last chapter, Schweitzer calls the seemingly small contributions of the average teacher "a thousand times stronger than the acts of those who receive wide public recognition. The latter compared to the former, are like the foam on the waves of a deep ocean."

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