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Self-Regard for Humans Who Teach

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March 26th is release day for Shamari Reid’s Humans Who Teach! Watch Shamari discuss self-regard in the video below.

I remember during one of my first few years teaching. I got really sick, and so I was at home trying to recover. By the way, I had no diagnosis, but I was exhausted and I couldn't move. I felt like I had the flu, but it wasn't the flu. But all I could do in that moment was lay around, rest, and watch Toni Morrison videos. And I would watch the interviews over and over and over. And I finally found one, and she said something that stood out to me.

She said, "It's about self-regard." And it sounded beautiful. But I had no idea what self-regard meant.

And so I watched the entire interview, hoping that she would return to this point and define it. But she never did. And so eventually, a few days later, I did what every language teacher does is I looked it up and I said, what is self-regard?

And I realized it was regard or respect for oneself. As I began thinking about that more and more and more, especially as a human who teaches, especially as someone who wasn't really invited to think about self-respect or self-regard or self-care. But throughout the years, I have come to define self-regard as the way that we feel about ourselves, the way that we value ourselves, the way that we care for ourselves. 

And so now when I hear Toni's words, it's about self-regard, I know exactly what she meant. It is about the ways in which I love, understand, and show up for myself.

Listen to Shamari Reid on the Heinemann podcast discuss his forthcoming book.

Humans Who Teach, by Shamari Reid


Humans Who Teach: A Guide for Centering Love, Justice, and Liberation in Schools is available now!

Order Humans Who Teach



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ReidCroppedHeadshotShamari Reid (he/him/his) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Teaching and Learning at NYU. He has taught Spanish, English as a new language, and ELA at the elementary, secondary, and post secondary levels in Oklahoma, New York, Uruguay, and Spain. As a scholar-educator, Shamari’s work centers love as a moral imperative in social justice education, and as a path toward culturally sustaining school communities.


Topics: Shamari Reid, Humans Who Teach, Teaching Profession

Date Published: 03/26/24

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