Fall Possibilities 2022
Powering Up for the New School Year!
Thanks for opening this newsletter at a time when you are so busy! We hope that you find the information here helpful in supporting your commitment to your students and to yourself as an educator.
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In This Newsletter
- Upcoming Workshops
- Pilot Project
- Possibility of the Month
- Book Nook
Check out our Upcoming Events page to stay in the loop.
We hope to meet many of you this year either virtually or in person! Want to find out more about what we do? Check out our website and our latest workshop flyer.
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Possibility of the Month
“Possibilities” are practices or strategies that work! They are either research-based or have stood the test of time and have the desired outcome.
What’s in a Name?
Each new school year begins with the opportunity (and challenge) to learn names for an entire classroom of new students. It is not always easy to remember and pronounce everyone’s names.
How important is it to get it right? The National Education Association states that it is VERY IMPORTANT and that “Getting names right can help create a learning environment in which all students feel valued and respected.” Caring classroom communities are built on a foundation of feeling valued and respected.
The 2022 “BC First Peoples 12 Teacher Resource Guide (DRAFT)”, produced by the BC First Nations Education Steering Committee (FNESC), includes a thematic unit called “The Power of Names.”
“For First Peoples, personal and place names have been passed down for countless generations. These traditional, ancestral, and spiritual names are a part not only of their personal identity, but also their relationships with the land, the ancestors and family stories. Multiple factors led to the loss of traditional names….Today First Peoples are successfully reclaiming the power of their names, both personal and place names.”
If you attend the training for this course (as Julie did), you will be given curriculum resource binder which includes background knowledge and inquiry activities.
Practice pronouncing students’ names – before they arrive. Consider meeting your students for the first time at the door with a friendly “Hi! I like to be called ________. What do you like to be called?” Take the time to write the phonetic pronunciation down on your class list before greeting the next student. This can help set the tone for a respectful relationship built on the sharing of our names.
Another activity is to have all your students record their preferred and last names onto a school device so that you can listen to it as many times as needed.
Learning your students’ names is the first step to building relationships that allow your classroom to co-create a set of norms and a classroom agreement based on what is valued in your new community.
We’d love to hear about your experiences and activities! You can comment here.
The “ISAASE Name Pronunciation Guide for Teachers”, written by the organization Improving South Asian American Students’ Experiences (ISAASE.org), highlights the importance of using and pronouncing names correctly and gives ways to accomplish this. This information applies to all students! Here are two tools to help you to pronounce a student’s preferred name and family name. https://www.pronouncenames.com/ https://pronounce.voanews.com/
For those teaching primary grades, there is a unit which includes a lesson on names: In Our Own Words: Bringing Authentic First Peoples Content to the K-3 Classroom – Unit 1, All About Me (page 31).
The Little Girl
by H. Pham-Fraser, Illustrated by Akemi
Lesson Three of Topic One of “reConnect, reCharge and Regulate” begins with a reading and class discussion of The Little Girl and can be used with any lesson that focuses on anti-racism, bullying, identity, inclusion or community. Although it is a picture book, it is suitable for students of any age.
Order at Amazon https://www.amazon.ca/Little-Girl-H-Pham-Fraser/dp/1039132545 or Friesen Press https://books.friesenpress.com/store/title/119734000213697018/H.-Pham-Fraser-The-Little-Girl
(These are not affiliate links. We are not compensated for sharing them. We just love these books!)