Much of the language around education suggests that we should be giving students clear objectives, transparent instructions and structured rubrics. There is good research to support this approach. It tells us that students will ‘perform’ better with these approaches. They will do better on our tests, suggesting that they will have ‘learned’. But is this preparing them for the world that they are living in? Does this kind of structure foster creativity or independence? This presentation will argue that real world challenges are uncertain and unpredictable and if we want our students to be able to deal with those challenges, our classrooms need to reflect this.
This session will examine the impacts of trauma on the brain, the reduction of executive function when under stress and trauma, complex trauma, and other factors impacting cognition and problem-solving related to trauma. Participants will also be provided with an overview of Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and trauma while examining the original ACEs study and current issues/situations that may be impacting childhood trauma. The session will conclude with understanding the need for self-care as educators.
Decolonization is a word that is often misunderstood. Scholars and activists around the world have studied, debated and fought for decolonization while the word itself often remains misunderstood, feared and resented. This session will seek to counter that response. Rather than representing actions to be feared, decolonization can be an invitation for all educators to be a part of contributing to a better Canada for all Canadians. This session will offer one example of what decolonized instruction might look like.
An uncertain classroom is very different than the one that most of us imagine when we think of our school systems. We all need to not only imagine a new approach to teaching, but also understand where it might or might not apply. We need to not only imagine the new approaches, but understand how teachers and students need to change in order to make them effective. What kinds of learning are best suited to uncertainty? How does the role of the teacher change? Of the student? What does it mean to assign an activity that is ‘uncertain’? How am I supposed to grade that? This discussion will explore practical, in-class approaches to promoting uncertainty and explore some of the possible advantages and challenges that can result.
This session will look at the variety of factors influencing resilience in students and how teachers can build foundational relationships with students. Participation will also examine the essential factors needed in schools and classrooms when students are experiencing trauma, while also looking at how they can assess student needs and teaching and learning needs in the classroom. This session will conclude with a look at teaching routines and classroom procedures and an understanding of classroom and school culture.