About Citizen Teacher

My name is lisa eddy. I taught public high school English Language Arts classes at a small city in SE lower Michigan for 25 years. I have taught courses in ELA9 Honors, IB Literature 11, ELA12, Theory of Knowledge, Writer’s Workshop, Mythology, Public Speaking, Drama, Reader’s Workshop, ELA10 Honors, American Literature and Composition.

Outside the classroom, at camps and workshops, I’ve taught courses in cooking; swimming; canoeing; fire-building; campfire cooking; ceremony-making; mandalas and medicine wheels; music appreciation; local plants and animals; wellness and self-care; meditation, mindful movement, and mindfulness.

In my work as a high school teacher, mentor, coach, and researcher, I sought to embody the disposition of a “citizen teacher,” as described by Todd DeStigter, in his 2001 NCTE book, Reflections of a Citizen Teacher: Literacy, Democracy, and the Forgotten Students of Addison High as an educator who is “dedicated to fostering in all students the ability to envision, create, and participate in a more humane and democratic society.”


@ Hollerfest 2018: 3 Generations of teacher-student. On the left is Cathy Fleischer, my undergrad English Methods teacher, mentor, and friend. I’m in the middle, and to my right is Matt Jones, my American Literature/Comp student–from the class of 1996–who is studying History at EMU. At the festival, I served as manager of Merchandise; Cathy and her husband volunteered in Merch; and Matt was there to play drums with Misty Lin & the Big Beautiful.  It was a magic moment!

Part of what it means for me to be a citizen teacher is to be an active participant in the public conversation about education. Since 2002, I have been a part of the EMWP Teacher Researcher Group. This professional learning community provides a workshop/support community for group members’ work as researchers and writers in education. This prestigious group is home to many leaders in the field. You can find group members in the pages of English Journal,  Language Arts Journal of Michigan (LAJM) and in many NCTE and Heinneman books, as well as in Professional Development and Community Literacy workshops in their home communities, around the state, and on the national scene. I am continuing to do research, publish, and present as a teacher researcher. I am forever fascinated by the subjects I pursue as a researcher.


My academic writing has appeared on the EMWP website, eMuse, and in Strides (an LEP publication), Language Arts Journal of Michigan, Connecticut Reading Association Journal, English Journal, and PMLA, the Modern Language Association Journal

I have recently written and performed in my first play, which includes stories from over two decades of students who respond to the question, “How would you say ‘whiteness,’ whatever that means to you, affected your K-12 educational experience?” I will be performing the play publicly in Ypsilanti, MI in October 2019.

Award Recipient

In 2009, I was honored and humbled to be the recipient of the Adrian Public Schools Education Foundation’s Outstanding Teaching and Mentoring Award.



7 Responses “About Citizen Teacher” →

  1. Susan Piazza

    April 12, 2011

    Hi –

    Thanks so much for sharing your insights and experiences. I admire your thoughtfulness and responsibility as a citizen teacher. I will be reading the book soon!



  2. Hey-

    Your thoughts truly are amazing I’m glad you have shared your thoughts. You have been an amazing mentor and have earned many students respect, including mine.

    Your student, Jay R.



  3. Shannon Ergun

    January 5, 2018

    Hi, I reached out to you on private message on Facebook this morning but since it will go to your other box, I wanted to reach out here too. You shared the link to this blog on a post I made on BATs. The instructional coach at my school and I would like to work first with our staff in practicing mindfulness before we expand to including students. Could you suggest a couple of things we could do to get started? We have a professional development day in a couple of weeks and are hoping to share with the staff a way to get started for themselves.


    • OMG! I’m so sorry! I never saw this message. I hope you found some resources. I have a ton in the blogs I posted after workshops. Let me know if there’s anything I can do at this point. Again, I apologize for not responding.



  4. Lorenzo Casanova

    January 19, 2019

    hello lisa eddy,

    My name is Lorenzo Casanova and I’m a former student. I attended Adrian High in 2001-2005 and took one of your English classes. I enjoyed the class and continued to write and read new material after your class. I’m a graduate student at Texas A&M University-San Antonio pursuing my degree in English Literature. The Spring 2019 is my first semester and I excited and honored.
    I regularly think of where and when literacy became important concept. I believe entering into your classroom started that fire inside. I want to say, “thank you”. In secondary school and undergraduate program I struggled with writing and analyzing reading material. So,I pursued the degree to learn new skills. I learned new skills and become familiar with a great faculty at TAMUSA.

    Have Fun,
    Lorenzo Casanova


    • Awww! Lorenzo! So good to hear from you! I remember you, and the poem I wrote where I quoted you! LOL! I have it in The Archive. I’d love to hear more about your studies. If you’d like, email me! lisagay.eddy1@gmail.com

      Peace & Love!



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