In May 2019, the Provincial Centre of Excellence began its Pedagogist Exposure Series intended to nurture the dispositions and sensitivities of pedagogical work. These exposures invite us to think with, work with, and enact pedagogy otherwise. In other words, they serve as a call to pedagogical action in early childhood education.
This section highlights regional exposures, curated by Regional Coordinators in response to their local context.
On Tuesday October 3, 2019 the Northeast Region pedagogists attended a talk given by Senator Murray Sinclair at Laurentian University titled The Truth is Hard. Reconciliation is Harder. This talk connected to the pedagogists reading of The Truth About Stories by Thomas King and the realities of the legacy of the residential school system in our region and in Canada.
Ottawa and Thunder Bay Region
During the evening of March 11, under the light of the full moon and inside the Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health, a group of becoming pedagogists from the Ottawa Region attended the full moon teaching circle and ceremony with Grandmother Louella Tobias. Here we made tobacco pouches, ate strawberries, celebrated and gave thanks to Grandmother Moon and thought about balance of sun and moon; water and fire.
Then the following morning, we regrouped at the National Gallery of Canada (See attached group photo in atrium). Our tour Guide for the Àbadakone | Continuous Fire | Feu continuel exhibit was Jaime Morse. We started in the bookstore where Jaime cautioned us to be mindful in selecting books with Indigenous themes, that the author be of the Indigenous community, represented in the book.
She also recommended that we read, Clearing the Plains by James Daschuk, a volume which she explained has positively impacted her families life, because of how the books makes accessible difficult stories concerning disease, the politics of starvation and the loss of Indigenous life.
The tour lasted almost two hours and during this time our group was exposed to a wide variety of works by Indigenous artists from many continents on a spectrum of topics of concern, including the loss of language and land; as well as Hannah Claus’s installation at the end titled “Our Minds are One”, which she created to engage a relationship with the viewer, as may be seen in the attached photo, of our group, inside the installation.
The intention of this exposure was to become pedagogist, at least for a few hours, over a couple of days, in relationship with Indigenous ways of knowing and being. An idea which came alive through this double exposure.
On Friday, July 19th, the London Region pedagogists went on a self-guided walking tour, informed by the curators of Hear Here London. As they encountered the downtown core they thought with Fikile Nxumalo on ‘presencing‘. Nxumalo (2019) writes, “Refiguring presences as a theory of change in early childhood research and practice foregrounds the interruptive potential of stories that attend to settler colonial tensions and Indigenous relationalities in particular places (p. 165).
Reference: Nxumalo, F. Presencing: Decolonial Attunements to Children’s Place Relations. In Hodgins, B. D. (2019). Feminist research for 21st-century childhoods: Common worlds methods (1st ed.). GB: Bloomsbury Academic.
On January 28, 2020, Toronto region pedagogists attended “Thinking metabolically with shivering, sweating, and feminist science studies in early childhood education” with Dr. Nicole Land, Ryerson University. This lecture was a part of the publicly accessible lecture series Disrupting Early Childhood: Inheritance, Pedagogy, Curriculum hosted by York University.
On February 11 and March 10, 2020, Barrie Regional Coordinators hosted an Exposure event for becoming-pedagogists within the Barrie Region. This event was held at 2 locations; one was held in Simcoe County and the other one was held at Trent University in Peterborough. Participants chose to attend the event that was in closest proximity to their location or could attend both events if they desired.
Both events were linked to conversations, readings, collective concerns and thinking that “becoming pedagogists” engaged in during the 12-week Provincial Centre orientation and the Barrie Region bi-weekly immersion gatherings held via Zoom in the late Fall and early part of the year. Conditions were created for three shared experiences with Regional Coordinators and pedagogists, as we made connections to our work with the Provincial Centre pedagogical commitments and the intentions of what it means to work and think as a pedagogist.