Diverse Perspectives on Development and Learning

This week in ECS 200, we were tasked with reading two articles that focused on the main topic of our class this week, “Diverse perspectives on Development and Learning”, instead of a chapter in our textbook.  While reading through the articles, I found myself thinking about previous university classes and some of my current placements.

The first article focused on Reconceptualists. I learnt that reconceptualists are challenging the way that prior theories are Euro-American and ignore the cultural, ethnic, and linguistic factors that effect a child’s development. Many of the previous theories that we have learnt in class are centered on European values and they forget factors such as cultural and ethnic values that influence a child’s development. While reading this article, I thought about the Place-Based Education which I learnt about in my Indigenous Studies 100 class. I found that this type of education was linked to reconceptualists because it incorporates culture, environment and curriculum into the education of students of all different backgrounds.

The second article focused on Indigenous Education in Canada. While reading this article, I found that I learnt about the way that residential schools effected Indigenous people in a different way. The author of the article described the trauma and forced assimilation of Indigenous people as an “erosion of spirit”. This “erosion of the spirit” made my previous learnings about the long term effects of residential schools make more sense. The cross-generational trauma that Indigenous people are still facing today is because of the erosion of their families spirits. It had never clearly sunk in how much residential schools have effected people in today’s time so much until I read that statement. In my placement for my ECS 100 class, I was told that the schools have the goal of lessening the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous students. I did not realize the gap was so large, until I read in this article that it will take 28 years for Indigenous students to catch up to the Canadian average. I fully understood why the school board as well as the school that I am at are trying so hard to improve the statistics. In my ECS 110 class, we were tasked with coming to terms with our privilege and from this article I understood that realizing that my privilege was built upon a racist society will help me better understand and teach Indigenous students.

These articles were interesting to read, but I am still wondering what steps I can take to improve the education of all my students from minority backgrounds?

Thank you for reading my blog post!

Ashley Osachoff

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