A Tribe Called Red just released their much anticipated album entitled, We Are The Halluci Nation. The Tribe Called Red is the Canadian-based music group comprised of First Nations members who merge electronic music styles along with contemporary powwow music. Their latest album features many artists (both Canadian and international) and focuses around the themes of decolonization and unification.
After listening to this powerful album several times this past weekend, I decided to incorporate it into my course Building on Reflective Practice. Since we have read some of Freire’s work about “reading the world” I thought analyzing this powerful and politically driven music would be an excellent way of tying together theory and practice. Students will be asked in pairs to “read” a song of their choice by analyzing, interpreting, and synthesizing.
Probe questions will be asked such as:
- What story is being told?
- How does the work compare with other similar works?
- What cultural, economic, or political forces influence the work?
- What historical forces influence the work?What can you do in your daily life/classroom to contribute to shifting the narrative of colonization?
This will be followed by a listening of the album interspersed with insights and discussion from the groups and whole class. Below I am including the official video for the first song off the album.
This upcoming Fall I (Pooja) will begin teaching my first course at Simon Fraser University entitled: Building on Reflective Practice. The past few weeks I have been consumed thinking about what I want my course to look like. I have been asking myself: What do I want students to experience during this course? What is my overall goal for this course? What new understandings do I want students to be able to arrive to?
While developing the course I have realized I want students to have opportunities to develop as critical reflective practitioners; that is think deeply about how issues of power, dominance, and equity influence their work and those they work with. I stumbled upon the following image (Pietroni, 1995) which has stuck with me. It speaks to how critical reflection helps to develop our practice (as teachers, social workers, nurses, etc.) as a professional, personal, and political act.
If you have taught a course in critical reflective practice, I would love to hear about your experiences. What worked and what didn’t? What did students find meaningful?
I (Cathy) am currently working my way through a book on critical reflection. ‘Working’ is the operative word, as this book, What Our Stories Teach Us, is set up as a guide to take us ( the teacher, professor, etc.) through an active critical analysis of our lives as educators using storying and critical incidence. The author, Linda Shadiow, loves to share stories herself. Below is one of her favourites. Apparently she has told it often and she uses it in her book to illustrate how our stories can impact our lives.
A graduate student is attending a lecture being given by one of her intellectual heroes, the Brazilian educator and theorist Paulo Freire. She takes notes furiously, trying to capture as many of his words as possible. Seeing that she is keenly interested in what Freire had to say, his translator asks if she would like to meet him. Of course! She is introduced and he begins by inquiring about her work. Then he graciously agrees to respond to a set of questions she and her colleagues hoped they would get the chance to ask him. She is impressed beyond belief, but time prevents her from asking one last, difficult question. They meet accidentally once more at the event and he wonders if she asked all her questions? No, there is one more. “Given your work, we want to know ‘where is the hope’?” Without hesitating he moves toward her, takes her face in his hands, looks into her eyes, and replies, “You tell them, ‘you are the hope, because theory needs to be reinvented, not replicated … it is a guide. We make history as we move through it and that is the hope.”
(Taken from http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-professor-blog/reflections-on-teaching-learning-from-our-stories/ )
The graduate student is, of course, Shadiow. She explains in her book that her experience with Freire never left her. It energized and motivated her. She had to “give back “. She invites us as both reader and participant to rediscover our incidences of profound learning and let them move us.