862 research outputs found

    Becoming Nikanaittuq - Strengthening the Indigenous-Based Teaching Practices of non-Indigenous Educators

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    In 2015, The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Canada published its 94 Calls to Action to address the atrocities that Indigenous people have experienced since first contact with Europeans and laid the groundwork for the reconciliation process between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. The report makes particular references to educational reform being essential if reconciliation is to be successful. At present, many non-Indigenous educators at Snowy Mountain Academy (SMA, a pseudonym) hold a predominantly colonized and Eurocentric educational philosophy resulting in the lack of a culturally relevant educational program which has negatively impacted the sense of identity, culture, and belonging of Indigenous students. The Problem of Practice (PoP) to be addressed in this Organizational Improvement Plan (OIP) is the need to implement initiatives focusing on building the pedagogical understanding and self-efficacy of non-Indigenous educators, improving their ability, confidence, and willingness to educate all students on the cultures, traditions, and worldviews of Indigenous peoples. As an adaptive, authentic and culturally responsive educational leader who is envisioning this PoP using a social constructivist and two-eyed seeing lens, I will work in collaboration with educational stakeholders to develop and guide the implementation of strategies that enable non-Indigenous educators to integrate Indigenous-based perspectives into their teaching practices. This integration is done to recognize and validate the important contributions of Indigenous peoples in the formation of modern-day Canada and to empower Indigenous and non-Indigenous students with the knowledge of the important contributions Indigenous peoples make to shaping Canada as a country

    Decolonizing Environmental Education: A Resource Guide for Non-Indigenous Educators

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    The field of environmental education is shaped by pervasive narratives and ideologies of settler colonialism. Many scholars cite the need for Indigenous voices and perspectives to be centered in education in order to move towards a process of decolonization, reconciliation, and support for ongoing Indigenous resurgence. In order for non-Indigenous educators to be able to guide students towards critical understanding of the history and context of land in environmental education, they must first investigate their own identity and assumptions within settler colonial society and education. This capstone project provides a resource guide in the form of a website for non-Indigenous environmental educators seeking to critically examine their own role in settler colonial systems and engage in co-resistance and Indigenous resurgence by centering Indigenous voices in their teaching. Using transformative learning and social justice education frameworks, the resource guide includes self-reflective practices and resources for critical analysis to decolonize curriculum and center Indigenous perspectives, as well as teaching resources exclusively created by Indigenous authors for use with students in the classroom or field. Intended for use by both formal and informal environmental educators, the resource guide is publically accessible and self-paced. Annotated resources allow readers to choose the most appropriate tools to further investigate internal biases and develop a personal path towards self-decolonization in order to facilitate similar critical and transformative learning experiences for students. (224 words

    Can the goldfish see the water? A critical analysis of ‘good intentions’ in cross-cultural practice

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    We claim to hold values that our students are responsible and autonomous adults whose success in our courses is best facilitated by our understanding of and respect for their specific backgrounds. We wish to be judged on these values by feedback provided by our students and those with whom we work. However, how well, if ever, are we able to ‘see the water,’ the cultural conditioning that leads us to act in ways that seem supportive of our students to us, but may be perceived differently by them? In this paper, we present conflicting evidence around perceptions of our practice. We discuss where things have gone well, and where interventions have possibly been traumatic for the recipients. We question whether, and how, our practice cross-culturally can be safe. We challenge ourselves and others to think carefully about our responsibilities to our students, whether our privileged positioning obliges us to share and if so, how that sharing can occur in ways that validate and equally respect the values of those with whom we work

    You are not alone: pre-service teachers' exploration of ethics and responsibility in a compulsory Indigenous education subject

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    Aunty Mary Graham, Kombu-merri elder and philosopher, says: "You are not alone in the world." We have a responsibility to each other, as well as to the land; and violence is the refusal of this relationship that binds us (Rose). In this paper, I use Emannuel Levinas’s ethics as first philosophy and epistemological violence to consider how non-Indigenous educators come to know Indigenous people. In his philosophy, Levinas presents a paradox: that to act as if one is a free being, as first philosophy, is to ignore that one is not alone in the world and that the presence of others evokes responsibility. However, to claim to know another is to bring them into one’s totality, one’s knowledge framework; an act of reducing another to who you think they are. We must find a new relationship to knowledge, one that is not based on possession. For non-Indigenous educators learning about teaching Indigenous students and perspectives in schools, much of the curricular material draws on the corpus of knowledge constructed by non-Indigenous researchers, politicians, and professionals about Indigenous people (Nakata, Cultural Interface). This material is already bound by others' interests and motivations. How can non-Indigenous educators engage with Indigenous peoples, histories and knowledges in a way that foregrounds the responsibility that our entanglement prompts? In this paper, I present data from my research into pre-service teachers undertaking a compulsory university subject in Indigenous education, where the pre-service teachers wrote weekly reflective learning journals. This data is drawn primarily from the end of the semester, where students reflected on what their learning would mean as they moved into future practice. I explore the role of responsibility in regards to the ethical violence that Levinas discusses

    Yanna Jannawi – Walk with Me. Centering Indigenous Ways of Knowing in Early Education and Care Services

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    University of Technology Sydney. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.The (2008) and the Early Years Learning Framework for Australia (Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations 2009) (DEEWR) prescribe that Indigenous Knowledges and perspectives be included in the curricula of early education and care services (EECS), to effectively value and support Indigenous families. However, the literature suggests there are substantial gaps in non-Indigenous teacher educator understandings and engagement with Indigenous Peoples and cultures. As a result, early childhood education too often includes stereotypically defined curricula interpreted from the dominant Western standpoint, which fails to value the complexity and diversity of Indigenous Knowledges. Using Indigenous research methodology, in a qualitative inquiry, this study sought to privilege the voices of Indigenous Peoples in identifying and exploring successful inclusion of Indigenous Knowledges in formal early learning settings. The study included thirteen Indigenous educators and parents/carers of Indigenous children, and eight non-Indigenous educators, who shared their views and experiences of Indigenous inclusion in the EECS with which they were engaged. Indigenous educators and parents/carers of Indigenous children identified and acknowledged positive approaches and examples of inclusion as well as sharing their views on additional needs and requirements to improve on the efforts of inclusion. Non-Indigenous educators demonstrated commitment to effective inclusion; however, the dominant positioning of Western worldviews over Indigenous epistemologies remained evident. In response, a relational model of inclusion grounded in Indigenous Knowledges is proposed. The model illustrates the diversity, complexity and value of Indigenous Peoples and our Knowledges. Critically, the model relieves the burden on non-Indigenous educators to be the authorities on Indigenous inclusion by positioning Indigenous Peoples as the experts and owners of Indigenous Knowledges, and the custodians of the lives and interests of the Indigenous children. Finally, the model champions ongoing respectful and meaningful collaboration between Indigenous Peoples and non-Indigenous educators as paramount to attaining genuine inclusion of Indigenous Knowledges in Western-based EECS

    Learning through relationship: in-context development for teachers of Indigenous students

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    In this study, I explore the experiences and qualities of productive learning relationships shared by Indigenous and non-Indigenous educators in K-12 public education contexts. I know from my own teaching experience and from existing research that non-Indigenous educators often have much to learn about teaching Indigenous students well, and about respectfully incorporating Indigenous perspectives in their daily work. This study springs from my experience as a Canadian teacher of English, Irish, and Scottish heritage who is growing through working alongside and relating with Indigenous colleagues and community members. Through a narrative inquiry approach (Clandinin & Connelly, 2000), I present stories drawn from conversational interviews (and in one case, observations) with Indigenous and non-Indigenous educators who have worked together in ways they believe have positively influenced the non- Indigenous educators’ practices with respect to Indigenous students. Each of these eleven stories is represented individually, including a piece of art, a context statement, a multi-page story, and a summary statement. In the discussion chapter, I draw out connecting ideas based on what I have learned from the stories. These include qualities such as being open, being genuine, trust, being centred on students, and emotional dynamics like fear and confidence, fun and laughter. The conclusions emphasize the variety of ways in which productive learning relationships arise and are sustained by Indigenous and non-Indigenous educators of unique personalities, backgrounds, and approaches. I point to some supporting factors, such as time and specific roles that can facilitate these learning opportunities

    Watch This Spot and Whose In It : Creating Space for Indigenous Educators?

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    Within Aotearoa/New Zealand, a bicultural relationship between Maori and Pakeha has produced a number of initiatives that are striving to be more inclusive of Maori needs, interests and language within the education system. The education system is attempting to ‘create space’ for Maori to be more proactively involved in decision-making forums with the integration of Maori knowledge and practices also occurring in areas like policy, research and teaching

    Alaska Native-focused Teacher Preparation Programs: What have we learned?

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    There are too few indigenous teachers in Alaska, as fewer than 5% of Alaska�s certified teachers are Alaska Native. However, Alaska�s Indigenous students make up 80% of student enrollment in the state�s rural schools, and over 22% of the school population statewide. Moreover, 74 % of teachers hired by Alaska�s public schools come from outside the state. Teachers new to rural Alaska typically remain on the job just one or two years, and high turnover rates in Alaska are strongly correlated with poorer student learning outcomes (Hill & Hirshberg, 2013). Many community and education leaders believe rural schools could benefit from having more Indigenous teachers, because they would likely stay on the job longer, be more familiar with their students� communities and cultures, and provide more powerful role models for Alaska Native students. This paper discusses why Indigenous teachers are important, and provides an overview of the initiatives from the past four decades aimed at preparing Alaska Native teachers

    Educating for Ethnicity: Local Cultural Vitality Among the Challenges of a Global Economy in Post-Soviet Sakha Republic (Yakutia)

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    This thesis examines ways in which indigenous educators in the Sakha Republic (Yakutia), an autonomous republic of the Russian Federation, maintain, revive and transform indigenous linguistic and cultural traditions in the contexts of the Russian Federation and the increasingly global economy. Through an analysis of a revival of ethnically-based education in the Republic, I argue that indigenous educators promote Sakha ethnicity in a way that also actively works to maintain harmonious relationships with the Russian Federation and the globalizing economy. First, educators present Sakha ethnicity in a global context, comparing the Sakha ethnicity to that of more established nations such as the French, Germans, British, and Russians in order to assert the distinctiveness of the Sakha ethnic group. In doing so, however, educators simultaneously promote the importance and value of Russian language and culture, safeguarding against the possibility of destructive Sakha "nationalism" that could spur a tension with continued Sakha participation in the Russian Federation. Second, educators actively work to break down a historical dichotomy between "traditional" and "modern," which associates Sakha culture with the traditional and Russian/European cultures with the modern. In this way educators embrace "modernization" and a global economy and retain the relevance of the Sakha ethnicity
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