“I Change Myself, I Change the World”: Stories of Hope, Change, & Light
Saturday, September 24, 2022
Saraciea J. Fennell
Editor of Wild Tongues Can't be Tamed: 15 Voices from the Latinx Diaspora
We are honored to have Dr. Tracey Flores, a veteran English educator and researcher, as our keynote speaker for the 2022 AETA Conference. Tracey is a former English Language Development (ELD) and English Language Arts (ELA) teacher, who worked for eight years alongside culturally and linguistically diverse students, families, and communities in K-8 schools throughout Glendale and Phoenix. Tracey is the founder of Somos Escritoras, which supports Latinx girls in developing their literacy skills while learning new tools to speak their truths, define themselves, and amplify their voices within a supportive and empowering community of Latinx girls and women.
Our featured speaker, Saraciea J. Fennell is a Black Honduran writer and the founder of The Bronx is Reading, a literacy program which creates an interest for reading among young people, while also promoting reading and writing skills through engaging author visits, reading group guides from publishers, and new books for children. She served as editor and contributing author for the young adult nonfiction anthology Wild Tongues Can’t Be Tamed: 15 Voices from the Latinx Diaspora (2021). Fennell opens the anthology by critically discussing how individuals from the Latinx diaspora are often stereotyped, “But we are so much more…”. The YA authors in Wild Tongues share from their lived experiences growing up in diverse Latinx communities. Their stories and voices can bring hope and validation to the students within our classrooms.
Chicana feminist, Gloria Anzaldúa wrote, “I change myself, I change the world.” She discussed that through major shifts in thinking, individuals can undergo a metamorphosis of healing change. The last few years have inflicted unexpected wounds on educators. The effects of the pandemic have resulted in much uncertainty for our communities, students, and their families. Policies of silence continue to sweep the nation regarding Critical Race Theory; our LGBTQIA+ colleagues, students and communities; and the banning of books that reach our students. These policies threaten educational autonomy, expertise, and safety. While we cannot control many of the elements that affect us, we can control how we shift, reflect, and create change within ourselves, ultimately shifting and changing our teaching and our classrooms. We continue to build ourselves up and forge new paths in order to create these changes. As we embrace change for our students and ourselves, we can change the world.
Tracey and Saraciea’s works, along with Anzaldúa’s ideas, have inspired this year’s conference theme: “I Change Myself, I Change the World”: Stories of Hope, Change, & Light. Stories of change inspire action. As educators we can align our practices and attitudes to create classrooms that center the lives and voices of our students and communities. Let’s come together to shift, reflect, and transform.
The Arizona English Teachers Association, your state affiliate of the National Council of Teachers of English, invites you to register for our AETA Conference 2022.
We look forward to seeing you there!
Date: Saturday, September 24, 2022
Time: 8:00-4:00 P.M. (Breakfast & Lunch included with registration)
Location: Arizona School for the Arts, Phoenix
Apply to the Four Corners Scholarship
The price for this in-person conference is more affordable than ever! Additionally, AETA is committed to working with our rural educators, and we offer a Four Corners Scholarship to offset costs.
The Best Western Downtown Phoenix has been blocked to offer you a great rate during your travels for the stay. Please click HERE to book your room at the newly renovated Best Western in downtown Phoenix!
Best Western is located at
620 N. 6th St, Phoenix, AZ 85004.
Phone Number: 602-452-2020