Queen's University

Dr. Theodore Christou

Associate Professor, Department of History, Faculty of Education
COMMUNITIES, HUMANITIES, SOCIAL SCIENCES, HISTORY, POLITICS AND POLICY
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Autobiography

I am an Associate Professor in the Curriculum Studies and Educational Studies fields, with a cross-appointment to the Department of History in Queen's University's Faculty of Arts and Science. I began my professional teaching career as an elementary school teacher in Scarborough with the Toronto District School Board. Following a circuitous path, which included teaching at the Primary, Junior, Intermediate, and Senior Divisions (Continuing Education), I returned to the academy to pursue doctoral studies in history of education.

My teaching in the Faculty of Education at Queen’s extends to several disciplines; in particular, I concentrate on history of education, philosophy of education, social studies, and the theory and practice of history.

My research, which spans several fields - history, philosophy, curriculum, and teacher education - is tied together by two questions: a) What is an education for?, and b) How might we imagine an education individual? These questions are bound by historical and contemporary, context and complexities.

I am the founding editor of Antistasis: An Open Education Journal, a publication, which is rooted in the vision of education as a public good. I continue to serve as an editor of the bi-annual journal, which is based out of the Faculty of Education at the University of New Brunswick. With Christopher DeLuca, I serve as co-editor of the Canadian Journal of Education and am past editor of the Journal of the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies. Further, I serve as the Past President of the Canadian Association for Foundations in Education and a member of the Canadian Society for Studies in Education Board of Directors.

I have four recent book publications, which are representative of my diverse creative and scholarly interests. The first book, titled Progressive Education (University of Toronto Press, 2012) is historical non-fiction and winner of the Canadian History of Education Association’s Founders’ Prize for best book in history, 2012-2014. The second is a book of verse titled an overbearing i (Hidden Brook Press, 2013). The third, a collection of essays co-edited with Shawn Bullock, is titled Foundations of Education: A Canadian Perspective (Canadian Association for Teacher Education, 2013). The fourth book is a history textbook written along with Stan Hallman-Chong, Rachel Collishaw, and Charlene Hendricks for Ontario’s newly-revised Grade 7 curriculum (Nelson, 2015).

Most Recent Project

The Conversation: Nixing plans to add Indigenous content to Ontario curriculum is a travesty

File 20180718 142428 1detfxx.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1Ontario’s newly elected government has dismissed a plan to revise the province’s social studies and history curriculums to add Indigenous content. There was no reason offered for Premier Doug Ford’s decision.I was part of the group rewriting the curriculum. I am not annoyed at the Ontario government’s decision for partisan reasons, or for the fact that so many taxpayer dollars that had been spent on rewriting curriculum are now wasted.

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Other Projects

  • The Conversation: The Byzantine history of Putin's Russian empire

    Russian athletes were conspicuous in their neutral colours during this year’s Winter Olympics and Paralympics due to a ban based on doping allegations.

    In Vancouver in 2010 and in Sochi in 2014, however, Russia’s Olympic hockey jerseys prominently featured a two-headed eagle exactly where Canada’s jerseys highlighted the maple leaf.

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  • The History of Ontario Education

    Over the course of the twentieth century, North American public school curricula moved away from the classics and the humanities, and towards ‘progressive’ subjects such as health and social studies. This book delves into how progressivist thinking transformed the rhetoric and the structure of schooling during the first half of the twentieth century, with echoes that reverberate strongly today, and investigates historical meanings of progressive education.

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  • Teacher Education

    Teacher education is engulfed in something of a seismic shift. Foundations scholars – defined here in disciplinary terms, which encompass History, Philosophy, and Sociology of Education – have been feeling the ground shift beneath their feet for years.

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  • History, Humanities and Social Science Education

    Since antiquity, we have speculated what it means to be an educated person and how we might live ethically and well. The curricula of schools are reflections of the stories we tell, the knowledge we value, and the aspirations that we hold. This project broadly explores the value of history, the humanities, and the social sciences and considers their evolving relationship with social, intellectual, and political movements.

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