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College of Education

Faculty and Staff

Lenny Sánchez, Ph.D.

Title: Associate Professor, Language and Literacy
Department: Teacher Education
College of Education
Phone: 803-576-6301
Office: Wardlaw 240
Lenny Sánchez, Ph.D.


Lenny Sánchez earned his Ph.D. in Literacy, Culture, and Language Education from Indiana University – Bloomington, his M.S. in Effective Teaching and Leadership from Butler University, and his B.A. in Elementary Education from Anderson University.


Lenny Sánchez is an Associate Professor and serves as the Program Chair in Language and Literacy Education in the College of Education at University of South Carolina. He also serves as co-Director of the Bilingualism Matters Center @ USC and Chair of the USC Latino & Hispanic Faculty Caucus. His research focuses on critical and cultural literacies with a specific interest in examining how literacy teaching and learning can: promote equity, empowerment, and critical literacy practices for young people; foster global connectedness; and cultivate bilingual, bicultural meaning making. He currently serves as a Department Editor for Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy. He served as past editor for six years for Literacy Research: Theory, Method, and Practice. His research has been published in journals such as Journal of Literacy Research, Research in the Teaching of English, Teachers College Record, Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, Language Arts, and Theory into Practice, as well as in predominant publishing houses such as Routledge, Springer, Information Age, Stylus, and Peter Lang.  

He has received various teaching awards and honors for his undergraduate and graduate teaching. He has also been actively involved in a number of leadership positions in national major professional organizations including: Vice President and Executive Board Member for Center for Expansion of Language and Thinking, Area Chair for Literacy Research Association, Executive Board Member for Whole Language Umbrella of NCTE, Board of Directors for Early Childhood Education Assembly of NCTE, among others.

Research/Areas of Expertise

Culture and diversity in literacy education, critical literacies/pedagogies, children as researchers, social justice & equity.

Selected Publications

Sánchez, L., Bauer, E.B., Wang, Y., Guo, W., Hao, L., & Hwang, K. (forthcoming). “That’s my mission”: Examining parents’ investments in their emergent bilingual learners’ development. Bilingual Research Journal.

Wang, Y., Sánchez, L., Bauer, E, Guo, W., Hao, L, & Hwang, K. (forthcoming). A new language, a new culture, and a new way of thinking: Examining how parents navigate barriers to support their emerging multilingual learners. In V.J. Lee & K.S. Lewis Grant (Eds.), Advancing culturally responsive and socially just approaches to multilingual family-school partnerships. Rowman & Littlefield Publishing.

 Sánchez, L., & Ensor, T. (2023). Stepping beyond the shadow to engage in a globalized world. Talking Points. 34(2), 2-9.

Sánchez, L., Agudelo Soto, E., Trigos-Carrillo, L., & Yoon, B. (2023). Laying the foundation for imagination, resistance, and political-ethical becoming: Announcing the 2021-2022 Alan C. Purves award recipient and honorable mentions. Research in the Teaching of English. 57(3), 306-311.

Sánchez, L., Ensor, T., & Agudelo-Soto, E., (2023). Reaching beyond personal borders to narrate cross-cultural connections. In S.N. Kerkoff & H.A. Spires (Eds.), Critical perspectives on global literacies: Bridging research and practice, pp. 160-175. Routledge Publishing

Bauer, E., & Sánchez, L. (2022). “In México, I was someone, but here I am a nobody:” An immigrant mother and daughter moving beyond love to facilitate new ways of being.  In A. Razfar and P. Smith, (Eds.), Learning about love through narratives: Insights from immigrant literacies (Special Issue). International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education.

Sánchez, L., & Ensor, T. (2021). Narrating global literacies: Crossing borders of exclusion during a time of crisis. Journal of Literacy Research, 53(2), 265-287.

Sánchez, L., & Honeyford, M. (2021). Creating critically engaged classrooms through community literacies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 65(1). Wiley Publishing.

Bauer, E., Sánchez, L., Wang, Y., & Vaughn, A. (Co-Editors) (2021). A transdisciplinary lens for bilingual education: Bridging translanguaging, sociocultural research, cognitive approaches, and student learning. Routledge Publishing.

Sánchez, L. & Ensor, T. (2020). “We want to live”: Teaching globally through cosmopolitan belonging. Research in the Teaching of English, 54(3), 254-280.

Bauer, E., & Sánchez, L. (2020). Living non lonbraj la: Haitian immigrant young people writing their selves into the world. In P Smith (Ed.), “Clarifying the role of race in the literacies of Black immigrant youth.” Yearbook, 122(13). Teachers College Record.

Wang, Y., Compton-Lilly, C, & Sánchez, L. (2019). Formative Reading Assessments of Running Records and Miscue Analysis: Limits and Possibilities for Literacy Learning. In Martin, (Ed.) Handbook of research on formative assessment in pre-K through elementary classrooms. IGI Global Publishing.

Zapata, A., Sánchez, L., & Robinson, A. (2018). Examining young children’s envisionment building  responses. Journal of Early Childhood Literacy. 18(4), 439-464.

Sánchez, L., Zapata, A, & Hill, J. (2016). “Maybe Henry did it! Maybe Chester did it!: Young children (re)authoring through postmodern picturebooks. In R. Meyer & K. Whitmore (Eds.), Reclaiming early childhood literacies: Narratives of hope, power, and vision (pp. 201-211) New York, NY: Routledge.

Campano, G., Ghiso, M.P., LeBlanc, R., & Sánchez, L. (2016). “American hunger”: Challenging epistemic injustice through collaborative teacher inquiry. In J. Lampert & B. Burnett (Eds.), Teacher education for high poverty schools. New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company

Douglas, T.R., Baumann, J., Sánchez, L., Clifton, A., McClain, V., Ingram, P., & Ingram, E.A. (2015). Conversation on the literacy development of urban poor youth: Perspectives from the classroom, neighborhood, and university. Voices in Education: A Bermuda College Publication, 1, 34-40.

Sánchez, L. (2015). Students as photo activists: Using cameras in the classroom for social change. Theory into Practice. 54(2), 163-171.

Sánchez, L., Campano, G., & Hall, T. (2014). “I’m still holding on”: Bearing witness to the gospel impulse in an urban all-boys school. In N. Witherspoon Arnold, M. Brooks, & B. Makoto Arnold (Eds.), Critical perspectives of black education: Spirituality, religion, and social justice (pp. 211-230) Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Tawfik, A., Sánchez, L., & Saparova, D. (2014). The effects of case libraries in supporting collaborative problem-solving in an online learning environment. Technology, Knowledge, and Learning,19(3), 337-358.

Sánchez, L. (2013). Fostering wideawakeness: Third-grade community activists. In J. Landsman & P. Gorski (Eds.), The poverty and education reader: A call for equity in many voices (pp. 183-194). Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, LLC.

Campano, G., Ghiso, M., & Sánchez, L. (2013). “No one knows the…amount of a person”: Elementary students critiquing dehumanization though organic critical literacies. Research in the Teaching of English, 48(1), 98-125.

Sánchez, L. (2012). Exploring the lived-through experiences of a young learner. Talking Points, 24(1),7-12.

Sánchez, L. (2011). Building on young children’s cultural histories through placemaking in the classroom. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, 12(4), 332-342.

Campano, G., Honeyford, M., Sánchez, L., Vander Zanden, S. (2010). Ends in themselves:Theorizing the practice of university-school partnering through horizontalidad. Language Arts, 87(4), 277-286.

Campano, G. & Sánchez, L. (2010) Embodying socially just policy in practice. In sj Miller & David Kirkland (Eds.), Change matters: Qualitative research perspectives for moving social justice   theory to policy. New York: Peter Lang Publishing.

Special Awards

University Provost’s Outstanding Junior Faculty Teaching Award (Recipient, University of Missouri)

College of Education Undergraduate Instructor of Year (Selected Nominee, University of Missouri)

College of Education Bess Schooling Endowment for Outstanding Professors in Elementary Education (Recipient, University of Missouri)

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.