This past weekend, I was talking to my mom and during our talk; I had a realization about teaching. In the faculty of education, we love labels. We refer to ourselves as ” anti-oppressive educators, lovers of inclusion, helping professionals” the list goes on and on. I just realized that using these labels have the capacity to be destructive. When we use these labels, they pacify us and make us feel a little bit better about the work that we’re doing. When we use these labels as markers of identity, it becomes very easy to fall into the trap of believing that we aren’t capable of hurting others. That’s terrifying. We all have the power to hurt others. How can we remedy this challenge? How can we make sure that we’re teachers that aren’t hurting others. Know who you are and ensure you’re actions conform to your values. In addition, making sure that you’re caring for yourself. I’ve noticed something about people over the years. I know that people hurt others for a whole variety of reasons. But!a lot of the time when people hurt others, they are illustrating how they have been cared for in this life. Instead of being offended; this is an opportunity for some kind of understanding.
What does this have to do with Treaty Education? What I’ve learned is that when it comes to these values that we claim to have; we can’t teach them. We can be them, though; and that’s pretty cool. I don’t think we can educate the hearts of children and make them change. We can’t make people change and that’s not our job. Can we be advocates for inclusion and not have relationships with members of this community? I don’t think so. The same can be said of Treaty Education. Can we value treaty education while carry eurocentric beliefs about education?
In the current climate, things are getting a lot worse for educators in the province. Resources are scarce and people are getting scared. This does not make people bad; it makes them human. But if we know who we are; and trust in our judgement; that will alleviate some of that fear.
These are some things that I realized during my chat with my mom because she’s the bomb.com.