1. Fall 2019
    1. Potlatch as Pedagogy: Learning Through Ceremony
    2. An Urgency of Teachers: the Work of Critical Digital Pedagogy

Faculty Reading Forums (Book Clubs) provide a collegial and informal way for faculty and contract instructors to connect and reflect around teaching practices and issues in academia. Teaching and Learning Services will provide copies of the books. Each group will have a faculty facilitator and will meet 3-4 times during the term. If you register, you commit to reading the book and participating in each of the sessions.

Fall 2019

Potlatch as Pedagogy: Learning Through Ceremony

By Sara Florence Davidson and Robert Davidson

Inspired by Haida ceremonial practice, father and daughter present a model for learning that is holistic, relational, practical and continuous.

In 1884, the Canadian government enacted a ban on the potlatch, the foundational ceremony of the Haida people. The tradition, which determined social structure, transmitted cultural knowledge and redistributed wealth, was seen as a cultural impediment to the government’s aim of assimilation.

The tradition did not die, however; the knowledge of the ceremony was kept alive by the Elders through other events until the ban was lifted. In 1969, a potlatch was held. The occasion: the raising of a totem pole carved by Robert Davidson, the first the community had seen in close to 80 years. From then on, the community publicly reclaimed, from the Elders who remained to share it, the knowledge that has almost been lost.

Sara Florence Davidson, Robert’s daughter, would become an educator. Over the course of her own education, she came to see how the traditions of the Haida practiced by her father—holistic, built on relationships, practical and continuous—could be integrated into contemporary educational practices. From this realization came the roots for this book.

Discussion facilitated by: Kahente Horn-Miller
Dates and times: Sept. 18, Oct. 16, Oct. 30 from 12-1:30 p.m.
Location: DT 404

Space is limited. Please register in advance by filling out this form.

An Urgency of Teachers: the Work of Critical Digital Pedagogy

By Sean Michael Morris and Jesse Stommel

For at least a century now, we’ve been told stories that machines are poised to “revolutionize” education.

The rationale for this revolution has remained largely unchanged: machines will make education more efficient. Sean Michael Morris and Jesse Stommel teach towards a different future – one in which dignity is prioritized over efficiency, one in which agency and freedom are prioritized over compliance and control. As the title of this collection of writing makes clear, in the face of stories insisting the future will be automated – that is, in the face of the urgency of machines – Morris and Stommel want us to agitate instead for An Urgency of Teachers.

In positing pedagogy – critical pedagogy specifically – as a lever for change, they ask us to join them in resisting the stories that machines have wants and needs and that their logic dictates the shape of the future. Instead they urge us to centre care and justice in our practices – to centre humans – knowing that this will require a radical re-ordering of the priorities of our institutions and ideologies as well.

Discussion facilitated by: David Hornsby
Dates and times: Sept. 17, Oct. 1, Oct. 15 from 1-2:30 p.m.
Location: DC 481

Space is limited. Please register in advance by filling out this form.