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A Different Perspective

My up brining was in a middle and upper class Suburb. This has largely shaped the way I “read the world”. Growing up in this community I can see how a bias is built. We see and read one thing, and that’s the only view we get. When we see a different side its hard to believe and imagine that it’s actually true.

On Television before Christmas I would always see that sad commercial about the starving children and how a donation would really help them. I think that helped shaped me to think other places with coloured people are poor, in poverty and they all live a “sad” life. Listening to the TED talk in class helped me view how this is not the case. Yes they have poverty, but they also have middle and upper class statues. This was all shaped by the “single stories” I learned growing up. Any bias and lenses I am brining into the classroom will be hard to know. As many of these biases are just formed into my mind and I don’t even know I have them. As a teacher, I will have to remember to keep an open mind, and try to learn from more than one perspective.

Inuit Style of Mathematics

Growing up I was never really fond of math. I had to work hard at it, in order to be able to do it the “proper” way, which was the one and only way. That is what we were taught anyways. Many people would be able to figure the answer in a different way, but would have to show their full work in order to get full marks. Even then, some teachers did not like the new creative innovated ways people were finding these answers.

After reading the Louise Poirier article, I found out that the Inuit people start to learn mathematics (counting) through language in their first 3 grade levels, as well as they learn through ‘natural’ ways, and not on pen and paper. Inuit people would learn to measure with parts of the body, as that is what they usually needed to measure first, which was for clothes. Looking at their calendar, they don’t base an amount of days in a month from solar or lunar, they base it upon natural occurrences that happen in nature. These are only a few things Inuit people do differently, but they base much of it on their on language because they identify themselves with their language.

To myself I can see how this would be a lot easier to learn in real life, as they can connect to it within in real life. Whenever I was learning math, I found it hard to connect with real life and always found myself asking ‘why’? Why do we have to learn it this way? Why is this the next step? I could never figure out the why.

Treaty Education

In Claire’s presentation she talked about the inclusion of teaching Treaty Education. The importance of this is to teach the students we are all Treaty people, even if we have no indigenous students in our classroom. We all live on the land where treaties were signed, making us all treaty people. One thing I loved that Claire showed us was a map of Canada that had both the provinces and treaty areas. I think this would be a good activity to add into our classrooms. She showed us a few ways she included Treaty Education, and made it clear that it can be done throughout the year. I believe this is an important aspect of the curriculum in which we must include in all subjects throughout the entire year. As this is our past history, and it should never be forgotten. Teaching Treaty Education is a good step towards healing the friendship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. Not only can we teach the students, but the parents as well. Telling the parents everything we have planned for the following week of our teaching, and showing them that is part of the curriculum is a good way to stop backlash from the parents. Clair also did events that included teaching with parents and community, like the building of tepees. Community activities can help educate and bring the entire community together.

Pedagogy of Place

  1. List some of the ways that you see reinhabitation and decolonization happening throughout the narrative.
  • Brining elders, adults and youth together (creating relationships and passing knowledge)
  • Audio documentary project (to spread knowledge throughout the community)
  • Skill building workshops
  • Interviews to transfer knowledge from elders to youth
  • Excursions where youth learn from elders
  • Group documentations
  • Audio visual (radio, Photo, film)
  1. How might you adapt these ideas to considering place in your own subject areas and teaching?

To adapt these into my areas of teaching, I will make sure to have the students outside a lot so they can connect with the land. Having the children do documentary projects on places throughout the community, allows them to learn at their own pace and curiosity. They can learn about the history, present and possibly make guesses about the future. Bringing in elders is also important, as they always have a lot of knowledge and even some language that can be passed down to the youth. As elders are more of an expert than I ever will be. Lastly have the students create a journal to take notes; they will be able to reflect, add photos, and carrying the knowledge with them.

3 Citizenships

In my K-12 school, I actually have no recollection on talking about citizenship. Even though my education probably did touch base on this a little bit. The way it was taught to me did not impact on myself actually learning and retaining any of the information. I believe it is important that everyone learns about the different types of citizenships so they are aware and respectful to everyone.

There are a total of three citizenships, which include, Personally Responsibly citizen, Participatory citizen and lastly Justice Orientated citizen. The first citizenship listed is the basic citizen who is a good person and does what needs to be done and will take part in organizations, while being able to care for themselves. The Participatory citizen goes one step further in society. They help organize events, so they play more of an activist role. Lastly, the Justice Orientated citizenship is the most involved citizen as they have all the above qualities but also question and wonder what is going on in society. When they learn more information about their questions they will put in the effort to act upon it.

Teaching students about, what each of the three citizenships are, is easy. They can know the definition, but what makes it hard is for the students to actually become a Justice Orientated citizen. It’s hard to teach students how to question what is going on in society, as they may only have one point of view and not want to question or think in another direction.

Before and After: School Curriculum

Before Reading:

I have never really pondered the question or even wondered where the school curriculum comes from. When I was younger, I just thought the principal would tell the teachers what to teach by giving them a list. As well, I thought that the teachers just knew what to teach, as they would have been taught it before. Now that I am older and know something has to be created I believe the curriculum is made through the school board, teachers and government. The school curriculum is just tweaked every year by the same people to help improve learning for the students and to add in new discoveries.


After Reading:

I now know that lots of people have a say in what is included with curriculum some of them being elected local authorities, parents, teachers, principals, senior administrators and universities. This reading brought new knowledge on how the school curriculum is easily affected by many different groups of people. What really shocked me was the fact that parents have a say in what is being included. This also concerns me as well as the fact that politicians have a say in the school curriculum as well. I also believe the students who are actually in school should have the right to learn whatever they want to learn about. It is their future it is gong to affect, it is their time they are putting in, by going to school to learn. If the students want to learn something, then I say, let them learn! The students should have the right to be provided with the highly rich knowledge to help them explore the world and continue to grow as learners.