Week 7: Public Policy

Growing up in a very open and creative environment I have never felt that what I read would be judge by racism, sexism, etc. I have read many of the classic novels that Kumashiro describes to be based on privileged communities. The way I found these novels were in school, throughout high school I had an English teacher that was very in-depth with being able to share her relationships with literature to every class she had. We had many conversations about how students today just simply do not care to read these amazing works that were written back in the 1800s because of the content given.  She had brought in modern literature as well, that many students in my class began to read on a daily basis. We read short stories that were based either on Indigenous cultures and also the old classics that I mentioned before. Kumashiro ended his chapter stating that many of his students had shown frustration with the theories and interrupting of privileges (racial, gender, etc).

Week 6- Levin Article

In the reading for this week, Curriculum policy and the politics of what should be learned in schools by Ben Levin, the readers can see that he is discussing the curriculum and how it’s being developed by certain influences such as politics, religion, and culture. Politics has a huge representation of how the curriculum will be designed. How education is being designed is being demonstrated by different policies that are shown through the government. I have not had a realistic understanding of how the curriculum was built or brought into an outline for their goals. I view that the government has a big role in being the “actors” while creating the curriculum.

As the Curriculum is mostly outlined by the government  I can see the tension with what information they will be discussing and how the information will be brought up to the indigenous communities while they will be learning about treaty education and the past of the Indigenous peoples in Canada.

Treaty Education- Week 5

Dear Claire,

Teaching Treaty education, Content and Perspectives in any community is important so every person that is living in Canada is able to know the history of their country. I personally feel that our curriculum is designed to teach different cultures living in Canada about the agreements and disagreements that have taken place over the past years that have caused many communities to either come together or perish. I feel that the comments you have made are very significant especially when talking about your understanding of all of the issues within our school systems. I did not learn about any form of Indigenous cultures in Canada until grade 3 where we briefly touched on residential schools, then it was dropped, but as I had been attending a catholic school at the time I’m sure you can understand why they did this. It was a Catholic elementary school with no Indigenous students in attendance. It was not until I had transferred to a new school in a public school division where I had to begin to understand what had happened in a country I call home. Even being in a small-town school, there were only two people that I can remember identifying as an Indigenous person.

The term “We are all treaty people”, had no true meaning to me until I was in Grade 12. We had been learning about the treaties and how they were organized, etc and I really began to think about why I am a treaty person. Why was this term important to me? If my family and I were not even alive when these treaties were being signed, how do they have an effect on me? The term is not supposed to have a personal connection, rather a simple understanding. We are treaty people because we are Canadian. We build treaties with everyone, may it be Immigrants, refugees, or our own people that follow the Indigenous cultures.

   

Week 3: The “Good” Student

Week 3- Respond to the following prompts: What does it mean to be a “good” student according to common sense? Which students are privileged by this definition of the good student? What is made impossible to see/understand/believe because of these common-sense ideas?

Being a “ Good” student has changed throughout the years of education and teaching. Kumashiro explains that a “good” student are those that respect themselves and the people in the same environment. In the past, say back in the ’70s or ’80s, I would have thought that the good students sat up at the front of the class, were paying attention in class, handing their assignments in on time, and only spoke when asked too. In today’s society, I find that some of these stereotypes so to speak are no longer the case. Many students that are successful in the classrooms today can sit anywhere in the classroom, they ask questions if needed and they answer questions throughout their classes. The privileged would most likely be the middle-higher class students just because of their race. Many probably think that the stereotypical student would be a white female, as they are “clean-cut”, they do as they are told. The students are not considered privileged would be those of different race, culture or even class. Say if a black male, that was in the lower class he would probably be put in the unsuccessful or “poor” student category just because of his skin and his family’s income. A good student should not be based on their skin color or their family income, etc. They should be graded on how they are acting in class, how they are responding to their grades, are they asking questions when needed.

ECS 210-Proposal (Place-Based Education)

ECS 210 Proposal (Place-Based Education) 

While reading the beginnings of the articles I have chosen to explore, I was able to find how Place-Based Education is slowing growing throughout Canada and other countries around the world, and why it is so important to explore different learning spaces. The articles were very informative when it came to this topic, not really knowing much about what place-based education is and how it can be found in a classroom, they have given me a new view of where students should be taught and that they learn in a new environment that is not in a four walls, a Smartboard and lined desks.  

The first article that caught my eye was, Place-Based Education: What is Its Place in the Social Studies Classroom? By Cynthia Williams Resor, which had grabbed my attention because of the title itself. Majoring in the Social Studies field I wanted to see if this article could have helped me with how I teach my students. The first few sentences that Resor uses to describe her article really gives any reading the reality of her topic. She states that the term “ Place-Based Education” is indeed misunderstood and misused, she provides other people’s opinions and definitions and also provides us where place-based education is used most in the schools today. Place-Based Education is mostly used within the subject of sciences, with a minor influence in the social studies. The second article that I chose was  The Place of Place-Based Education in the Australian Primary Geography Curriculum, by Lou Preston. This article was interesting to find, I was not sure if I should pick this article just because it is based in Australia and has a specific subject behind it, but then I was reading and it shows how different the Place-Based Education is in two regions of the world. Preston describes his article with a positive field, he shows how place-based education and Geography can easily go hand and hand. The final article talks about rural schools and how place-based education has an effect on the smaller school. The title for the third article is Rural Schools: Small Schools, Teacher Preparation, Place-Based Education, edited by Anne Rodgers Poliakoff, but I was focusing on the chapter  Accountability and Sustainability: The Dual Challenge of Education in Rural Places, by Doris Terry Williams. Being from a smaller town, I was able to see how this article describes rural schools and how they struggle with or exceed expectations with place-based education. Williams also mentions that rural schools are using this to help their communities, and she then describes how each school/community is using place-based education. 

These articles have drawn my attention and I have a small connection to them, allowing me to understand each article in a different manner. I enjoyed each article as they are all different with some time gaps between them all. The oldest one that I found was 2002, and being able to see how the research has changed for this topic from then to now is astonishing. They all describe Place-Based Education in different ways with that being said I plan to get other people’s perspectives on these articles. I might re-read them, try and view them in different ways, but I definitely want to read them to family and friends getting their opinion on each one, and if they have any comments on if these articles, what are they? Did they have similar connections to them like I have?    

     Works Cited 

Preston, Lou. “The Place of Place-Based Education in the Australian Primary Geography Curriculum.” Geographical Education, vol. 28, 2015, pp. 41-49. ProQuest, https://login.libproxy.uregina.ca:8443/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.libproxy.uregina.ca/docview/1773216223?accountid=13480.

Resor, Cynthia W. “Place-Based Education: What is its Place in the Social Studies Classroom?” Social Studies, vol. 101, no. 5, 2010, pp. 185-188. ProQuest, https://login.libproxy.uregina.ca:8443/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.libproxy.uregina.ca/docview/757172401?accountid=13480.
Rural Schools: Small Schools, Teacher Preparation, Place-Based Education. Edited by Anne R. Poliakoff. vol. 46, Council for Basic Education, 1319 F Street, NW, Suite 900, Washington, DC 20004-1152 (single issue, $2; annual subscription: $50), 2002. ProQuest, https://login.libproxy.uregina.ca:8443/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.libproxy.uregina.ca/docview/62290460?accountid=13480.

Curriculum Theory and Practice- ECS210

Reading response: Respond on your blog to the following writing prompt: What are the four models of curriculum described in the article, and what are the main benefits and/or drawbacks of each? What model(s) of the curriculum were prominent in your own schooling experience? What did these models make possible/impossible in the classroom? Be sure to refer to the assigned article in your post.

  1. The four different approaches to curriculum theory and practice are:
  • Curriculum as a body knowledge to be transmitted.
  • Curriculum as an attempt to achieve certain ends in students product.
  • Curriculum as a process.
  • Curriculum as praxis.

I find that there are more negatives(drawbacks) to each rather than positives and/or benefits. For the first two especially, I noticed that the article had seemed to showcase the drawbacks. When discussing ” Curriculum as a syllabus to be transmitted”, Smith takes not that the participants have an idea of what the course will look like, which is 100% a positive aspect but looking at the negatives. Smith also states that “the importance of the topics or the order in which they are to be studied will not be indicated”. The other drawback ” an approach to curriculum theory and practice which focuses on the syllabus is only really concerned with content.

2) Then discussing the factors of ” curriculum as a product”, again more drawbacks. Having measured outcomes for the students, having education viewed as a technical exercise, and concerns are being formed into a procedure. This is how I view my educational experiences throughout elementary school and sometimes in High school. Being in a french-emersion elementary school I had felt that our school was always worried about the stats of each class and if we (the students), were going to be part of the percentages that will be continuing into the next grade.

3) I find it impossible that this model (Curriculum as a product) was inforced in my classrooms because each student will learn differently and at a different pace throughout each grade. I know I found maths and sciences almost impossible to comprehend, whereas English and arts were my easier subject. Knowing that my teachers were mostly concerned with having students succeed for the percentage rates does not make me feel any better. I believe that teachers should want to help each student to succeed to the best of their abilities.

 

 

ECS 210 – Common Sense

a) Read: The problem of common sense (Introduction; Kumashiro. (2009). Against Common Sense: Teaching and Learning Toward Social Justice, pp. XXIX – XLI).

b) Respond: Respond to the following writing prompt in two to three paragraphs: How does Kumashiro define ‘commonsense?’ Why is it so important to pay attention to the ‘commonsense’?

  1. Google definition of Common Sense is Good Sense and Sound Judgement in practical matters. Common Sense limits what is considered to be consistent with the purposes of schooling. Common sense does not tell us that this is what school could be doing, rather they tell us what schools should be doing. Common Sense is viewed ad a subject that should just be noticed within demonstrated throughout the course loads and activities. Common sense is viewed through the norms of school: like society and being privileged and or having benefits because of your part of a certain group like race, class, gender, sexual orientation, etc. Kumashiro showing how following social norms can alter the way teachers, teach.  All these things play a factor when discussing the norms of common sense. Common sense is not what should shape education reform or curriculum design, rather it is what needs to be examined and challenged. Treat everyone equally no matter their “certain groups” or the social norms that have been put in place. As a teacher, we aren’t supposed to view our students as “groups”. They each have a different goal for their age and we are supposed to help them succeed with those goals.
  1. It’s a form of decision making and it allows one to have an image of either consequence or rewards. Understanding the mistakes that one makes, and pay attention to common sense because there us a difficult perspective to recognize the ways of teaching and understanding the mistakes that one makes. “ Common sense tells us that experiencing such things are actually quite oppressive, we might end up feeling disoriented or uncertain or even guilty”     

Normative Narratives- ECS 110

i)Normative Narratives

The assignment is to find 3 blog posts that have been written by my classmates; but they have to correspond with the topics of Gender/Sexuality, Class, Race, and our Canadian Identity. Picking which blogs to work on was difficult because of everyone having different pasts. Being able to relate to everyone in my class is something that could almost be impossible because I might have been through something similar but having the end result end up being completely different. I read through different posts of my classmates and I honestly only found a few that I could relate to. The blog posts that I have chosen do not relate to me immediately, and I do not understand the way that the writers of the posts would have felt at the occurring times of their stories, but I could try and imagine what they were going through. The similarities that the posts show is what I think our gender has taught us. We have gone through 3 different lives and they all impact us in a very similar way because we are females.

The main one that stood out to me was written by Jade. The one post that she had that I could relate to would be her “Class” post. She describes “Christmas being a stressful time”, and showing that a time of celebration, hope and love could honestly be negative in different households. My childhood at Christmas time wasn’t easy, but I defiantly didn’t have to deal with the things that Jade had gone through. I can relate to the way that Jade is living with a single mother and how much that it can affect the whole connection between mother and daughter. My mother and I had been alone for 13 years, and she was always having two or three different jobs just so that it would be possible for me to have a great Christmas; with the brand new presents under the tree.  Jade and I have minor similarities, but they could have affected us in the same way.

Then when reading Samara’s blog, I had many connections and or similarities, especially in the gender blog. We both have similar pasts when it came to birthday parties, I would often have girls at the parties unless we went to “It’s a Blast” or at the beach. Whenever I was having the party at my house it would always just be girls, simply because it would usually be a sleepover. Growing up from birth to about age 10 I was wearing dresses and Tiaras but after my tenth birthday, my whole appearance changed. I started wearing sweatpants and converse and baggy bunnyhugs. I never wore makeup or played with dolls. I was playing outside with the boys in the neighborhood. We would play basketball outside until it was dark out and nobody ever questioned it. I never realized that people could have possibly been questioning if I was a lesbian. I never realized that people could have had an issue with it, until moving to Vibank. A small town, like is described in Samara’s story. Everybody knows everyone. Doesn’t matter who you are, but you are known. It was and is still today, very old-fashioned. Which can be scary, if people were to “break” the childhood that Samara and I grew up with.

The similarities that Jade, Samara and I all share is very small, but we do all have a certain connection within our pasts. The female role models in our lives have a huge impact on the way that we were raised. Every story has demonstrated the ways that our mothers have influenced us to be a female in our society. Every blog that I have posted, I have always made a reference towards my mother simply because she raised me alone. She is the reason for who I am today. The titles for my gender, class, and race were made more me the moment I was born. I was put into the cute pink sparkly outfits because  I was a girl, but my actions were never questioned until I turned into a teenager because I am a lady. Between all the blogs that we have written for the class that is based on the topics ( race, Canadian identity, social status, gender, etc) we all have a very strong connection to being a female. We all describe how being a female is chosen for us. For Jade, she shows this in her The Impact of Gender Roles blog and she describes how “she could play with the dolls with her sister, but if her brother began to play with them then he would have been a F*ggot in her father’s eyes.”

ii) Creating Counterstories: Disrupting normative narratives

When I read this, I begin to think ” what in the world would cause this thought [the thought of boys wanting to play with ‘ girl toys’] to be such a disturbing idea to those who raise us?” Nobody has ever said that boys have to play with boy toys like trucks or skateboards, and girls can only touch barbies and makeup. It just became the “normal” within our society. Several people that I know, including myself, have broken these normal gendered and or class events. I know that when  I was growing up I played on a male softball team and there were only 2 other girls on the team. Most of the boys didn’t like us girls playing on the team ” because girls can’t run fast enough”… Well literally that week all of us girls got like 2 home runs and we were winning within our league. But because I grew up with a single mother, I couldn’t afford to play anymore so I had to quit the team. The boys on that team from what I comprehend, they all believed in patriarchy, which is: the belief in the inherent superiority of men and male norms and the organization of society based on this belief. (Sensoy & DiAngelo, pg 103)

The way that modern society is demonstrating ‘class” and ‘gender’ to the newest generations, is honestly fairly negative. I have witnessed an 11-year old that is on Facebook, looking at a video of a homeless woman, and all that was said was ” well she should just get a job then she wouldn’t be in that situation.” This showed me that the new generation doesn’t always think about the past of people. That woman on the Facebook video was a veteran who had lost her house, due to bankruptcy. She was dealing with PTSD and she didn’t have enough money to seek treatment, let alone get a job. The normal for society in today’s world would honestly be to shut your mouth and you’ll be fine. I believe that we should speak out for the people that can’t, maybe because of their skin or gender or religion. The perspective changes with every true story that one will read. The textbook say, ” When we think about what class positions we hold, we might initially focus solely on our economics- that is, being rich or being poor…” (Sensoy & DiAngelo. pg 160) This statement shows that teh current society that we live in is based on number and symbols, which would be the normative; that we all have to deal with in our every day lives.

Works Cited:

Sensoy, Özlem, and Robin J. DiAngelo. Is Everyone Really Equal?: an Introduction to Key Concepts in Social Justice Education. Teachers College Press, 2017.

Stenson, Samara. (2018) Life before I was born. https://samarastenson.wordpress.com/

Courtenay, Jade. (2018) Socioeconomic Status. https://jadecourtenay.wordpress.com/

Deck-Horvath, Carly. (2018) Self- Story #3- Gender and Sexism. https://cdh.home.blog/

Self Story #4 – Class

Every since we did the privilege walk in class, I have always been thinking about the questions that have been asked. Especially one in particular “If you have ever been told that you have to work hard for what you want, step back” Now I did step back, not just in the class room but also in my life. I thought of every time I have been told that, and personally it sucked. I never enjoyed being told that because I already knew that I had to work hard to be successful. I have never thought about my  “class” before, because I never thought of myself in a class of society. I just thought that my family was constantly broke or poor; but we were always happy. We would obviously have the stressful weeks, but we as a family would figure it out.

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My mother was a single parent for 13 years. She gave birth to a very spoiled, snotty girl when it came to things that I wanted. But she raised me to be as respectful as possible when it came to people and their feelings. Not everyone had the same past as me. Which we figured out in the privilege walk in class. We should all be able to comprehend the past of other, no matter how difficult it could be.  My mother has showed me that class/ social statues shouldn’t change the way we treat people. You could be living in a cardboard box under the ring road over pass, or be sitting beside the Queen of England, it doesn’t matter. We all deserve the same equality and same respect towards each other.