Part a: Teaching philosophy statement
As a teacher, I firmly believe in recognizing and respecting my pupils’ many cultures, histories, and languages. Specifically, I adhere to the cultures and well-being of those kids whose families are from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds. To this aim, I have committed to complying with the legal, administrative, and organizational laws and procedures for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education. I have also prioritized ensuring that my pedagogical approaches are inclusive and sensitive to local cultures. Children identified as having special educational needs may benefit from implementing several different programs I have put into place. Creating individualized education plans, using assistive devices, and providing educator training on inclusive practices are all essential in teaching (Major et al., 2019). I have applied them to guarantee the best out of the students.
In my classroom, I will make it a point to educate about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In addition, I will educate them on their histories, cultures, and languages through various educational strategies. These strategies include Indigenous pedagogies, culturally competent instruction, and inquiry-based learning. I will prioritize creating learning opportunities for students that will allow them to construct their understanding of the histories and cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples (Bhatti & Hassan, n.d.). They will be able to engage with the Knowledge of First Nations peoples in meaningful and respectful ways. It may entail inviting elders and other community members to share their expertise and points of view. Teaching will entail using traditional narratives as a teaching tool and integrating Indigenous viewpoints into curriculum areas like science, mathematics, and the arts. According to Arens et al. (2014), indigenous languages and cultures should be supported, valued, and fostered across the curriculum. Culturally sensitive and inclusive classroom settings should be built for all students. These critical techniques will increase and guarantee the students’ understanding and passion for attending the classes.
I will use various strategies, like differentiated instruction, student-centered learning, and collaborative group work. These strategies are essential in promoting inclusive student engagement and participation in classroom activities, thus encouraging student participation. I will also ensure appropriate resources are selected for smooth teaching and learning. The selected resources will be culturally pertinent and suitable, representing various Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and past events. Lastly, I will make sure that appropriate accommodations are made for students who have special needs. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students’ cultural identities and linguistic origins may substantially influence their education quality (Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies n.d.). I will dedicate myself to ensuring that all students have an equal opportunity to participate in and succeed in their studies. Collaborating with students, families, and communities is vital to understanding the kids’ distinctive cultural and linguistic requirements (Grooms & Childs, 2021). I also commit to working hard to provide a secure, encouraging learning setting and acknowledging and appreciating the unique qualities of each student.
Additionally, to foster inclusive and culturally responsive education, involving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and professionals in the decision-making process about educational matters is vital. When picking out valuable materials for the classroom, I will use a critical lens to assess whether or not they are accurate, relevant, culturally, and suitable for usage in that setting. I will look for resources that have been penned by individuals of First Nations and that reflect a variety of viewpoints and experiences from a wide range of people. Whenever I interact with members of First Nation families and communities, I will remember the significance of rapprochement and work towards establishing cordial and considerate bonds founded on trust, an appreciation of one another’s perspectives, and a commitment to achieving common objectives.
Part b: Analysis; Truth-telling
The “Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages” (LAAL) is the resource that I have decided to use for this study and interpretation (LAAL, 2012). The Living Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages Archive is an online repository with the dual goals of preserving and promoting indigenous languages. It has audio and video recordings of Native speakers of various Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages and dialects throughout Australia. Because I am a language teacher, I am particularly interested in this resource because of its relevance to my emphasis on language and communication.
A wide variety of possible gains might be attained via applying LAAL in the school setting. In the first place, the application of LAAL can assist students in cultivating an appreciation and comprehension of the many diverse cultures and languages of Australia’s First Nations peoples (Lal et al., 2022). Students have the opportunity to get a better understanding of the profound relationship that exists between language and culture. When students see Native speakers of various Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages and actively participate in language exchanges with those speakers, they are sure to learn more from the speakers. The second way LAAL may be used is to assist educators in teaching and studying Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages in educational institutions. Teachers can use the tools provided by LAAL to enhance already existing language courses or to create entirely new language courses. This can be achieved by integrating the existing Knowledge and what is available on the LAAL platform to develop a more knowledgeable approach. Thirdly, LAAL may help teach and learn a language in a broader context. Students can cultivate an understanding of the similarities and contrasts across languages for personal growth in language and communication. They may also develop an appreciation for the importance of multilingualism by learning from speakers of other languages and listening to speakers of those languages.
Nevertheless, implementing LAAL in the academic setting has numerous possibilities of presenting difficulties. To begin, certain schools or communities may have restricted access to technology or internet connectivity, which might come as a hindrance (Drane et al., 2021). It may make it difficult for students and teachers to interact with the resource anytime. Therefore, it may also limit the time students spend utilizing the resource. Second, it is essential to remember that cultural sensitivities may be linked to using linguistic resources. For instance, specific communities of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples may limit the community members permitted to access particular language texts. It may restrict students from some communities from accessing material they perceive relevant from the restricting communities. Thirdly, there may be a need for more training and support to incorporate the resource into the curriculum successfully. Teachers are the leaders and guides of the process and its implementation. Lack of practical training and Knowledge may limit the teaching and understanding of the students.
Despite these obstacles that pose the LAAL application, including Indigenous Knowledge in the curriculum is essential to fostering reconciliation and developing inclusive educational settings. The Eurocentric assumptions that are the foundation of most Western education may be challenged and dismantled with the support of educators who include Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ views, Knowledge, and languages in their curricula (Laccos-Barret et al., 2022). This can encourage a more balanced and holistic approach to learning that acknowledges and celebrates Australian society’s various cultures, languages, and histories. It can also be of assistance in promoting a more holistic approach to learning and encouraging more student population towards the passion and love for Indigenous education.
In addition, using LAAL can enable educators in their professional learning to acquire a comprehensive knowledge of, respect for, and comprehension of Indigenous histories, cultures, and languages. This may be accomplished by intensively understanding Indigenous histories, cultures, and languages. According to Blakemore (2017), implementing a cross-curricular emphasis made possible with the assistance of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Strategy 2015 serves as a foundation for improving Indigenous students’ academic achievement. Teachers can build tremendous respect for the significance of language and culture to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples by interacting with the resources provided by LAAL. They can also develop a broader knowledge of how language loss has impacted Indigenous communities and develop approaches to ensure the prevalence and sustenance of the Native languages. As a result, it can serve to educate and create educational practices that are more culturally responsive, inclusive, and respectful to the speeches, people, and communities.
Using Indigenous Knowledge in the classroom can improve students’ health and well-being. In addition, it can enhance their level of academic engagement and overall academic performance, thus presenting its need to be incorporated into the system. Indigenous Knowledge can also improve students’ social and emotional welfare in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities (Macniven et al., 2019). It can also enhance the well-being of students from other cultural backgrounds by encouraging a feeling of belonging and identification among these student groups. Further, educators may aid in creating more meaningful and engaging learning experiences for their students by incorporating Indigenous Knowledge into teaching and learning. These experiences can rely on the skills and interests that each student already possesses and build on them toward more complex skills and Knowledge. In conclusion, the use of LAAL in the classroom has the potential to help the teaching and learning of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages and cultures. It can also foster a more comprehensive understanding of the relevance of language and culture to students of all backgrounds. Incorporating Indigenous bits of Knowledge into the curriculum has a lot of potential benefits, but there may also be some difficulties involved with using it. Through encouraging rapprochement, facilitating inclusive student participation and engagement in pedagogical endeavors, and developing appropriate techniques, the teachers and students can be able to LAAL to improve their language and communication skills.
Part c: Analysis; Decolonization
The argument presented in Provocation 3, which asserts, “I’m not Indigenous, so it’s not appropriate for me to teach Indigenous perspectives,” is frequently employed by educators in most institutions. It often restricts the dissemination of Indigenous languages and culture as well as the level of comprehension of the various Aboriginal languages. This provocation assumes that only indigenous educators are qualified to educate about indigenous points of view. This widespread misunderstanding forms the basis for excluding Indigenous points of view from the curriculum and secluding the Aboriginal culture. Therefore, it leads to a restricted comprehension of Australia’s historical events and cultural practices and an erosion of essential aspects of the Australian culture. Guaranteeing that all teachers can contribute to developing cultural responsiveness, institutional racism, power, and privilege in the classroom is vital to dispel this myth and present an alternate method (Arens et al., 2014). The acknowledgment of traditional owners and their understanding of the land, the cultural values and traditions passed down from generation to generation, and how these factors impact urban planning and governance frequently help to enhance the Indigenous perspective. Including Indigenous peoples’ points of view in educational materials helps Indigenous students see the significance of their culture and boosts their level of participation (Taylor et al., 2019). It instills in youngsters not of Indigenous descent a sense of reverence for the history of the First Nations peoples and an authentic comprehension of the place they call home.
As a result of the provocation, the belief that only Indigenous educators can teach Indigenous viewpoints ignores the fact that comprehending Australia’s history and cultures from Indigenous perspectives is crucial to the Knowledge of the nation by all Australians. According to specific indigenous points of view, the art of knowing, also known as science, the forces of production and technology, and the understanding of what constitutes proper behavior, also known as ethics, all work together to weave social and cosmic values. Including Indigenous perspectives in the school curriculum is essential to offer students a holistic grasp of Australian history. Incorporating the Indigenous perspective also enables students to question prevailing narratives that uphold racist and oppressive practices in society (Daniels-Mayes, 2020). It can further marginalize Indigenous students and reinforce their sense of invisibility, leading to social and emotional detachment if Indigenous viewpoints are not taught. Students who participate in activities related to Aboriginal culture can experience the splendor of Indigenous communities and landscapes with their fellow students and Indigenous community members. Not only do the educational programs foster historical Knowledge and empathy on an individual level, but they also lay the framework for the construction of an Australia that is equal and inclusive.
Every teacher must encourage cultural responsiveness and see their pupils acquire Knowledge of the numerous historical traditions and contemporary lifestyles that have helped form Australia. To implement a culturally responsive pedagogy, teachers must first acknowledge the existence of power dynamics and then accept diversity. After that, they can employ teaching methods that are culturally appropriate to produce a learning environment that is secure and welcoming for all students. Indigenous perspectives can be incorporated into a curriculum via consultation with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. It can be achieved using AIATSIS (Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies) or the Australian Curriculum (Nyholm, 2022). Furthermore, it can be comprehended by pursuing professional development opportunities to develop educators’ Knowledge and understanding of Indigenous histories and cultures. Educators can incorporate Indigenous perspectives into their curriculum using AIATSIS or the Australian Curriculum. Educators can contribute to promoting reconciliation and social justice for all students if they acquire a comprehensive awareness of Indigenous viewpoints and integrate this understanding into their practice.
Moreover, The EATSIPS (Embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives in Schools) can be an essential guide for schools to help them build meaningful relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that will last for a long time. This will improve the learning outcomes for Indigenous students and provide all Australian students with an understanding of and respect for the traditional and contemporary cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Three components operate inside the EATSIPS framework; personal reflections, an overall school ethos, and a classroom ethos (Queensland Government, n.d.). These components collaborate to develop a robust culture within the school and the surrounding community. The “third space culture” should be implemented in educational institutions because cultural space is a place for all individuals to gather, develop, and educate themselves about the language and culture of the Aboriginals (Queensland Government, n.d.). In their pursuit of Knowledge throughout their lives, students from Indigenous communities can benefit from the framework by becoming more capable and knowledgeable. On the other hand, it concentrates on enhancing the educational opportunities available to every student while also providing benefits to the institution and the surrounding community.
As educators, it is our professional obligation to cultivate a learning environment that is welcoming to children of all backgrounds and is culturally sensitive to their needs. This environment must acknowledge and appreciate the variety of experiences our students bring to the classroom. The environment must also encourage students to be confident in their languages and cultures while also encouraging them to learn about other students’ cultures. The Australian Professional Standards for Teachers mandate that educators understand and respect Indigenous peoples’ histories, cultures, and languages and incorporate this Knowledge into their classroom instruction (Lowe & Galstaun, 2020). Educators may achieve their professional duties and contribute to promoting reconciliation and social justice for all Australians if they respect Indigenous points of view and include them in their lessons. Schools do this by emphasizing the local language and culture and raising students’ awareness of the role that reflective characteristics play in shaping both of these can make efforts towards including the opinions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. This initiative’s ultimate goal is to integrate Indigenous worldviews to the point that they are fully ingrained in the institution’s pedagogy and culture.
The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Strategy 2015 emphasizes the necessity of incorporating Indigenous viewpoints into the curriculum to encourage the development of cultural competency and understanding. The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is intended to be successfully implemented in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia. This strategy focuses on allowing quality participation, service delivery, and leadership to accomplish this goal. Understanding, employing, and respecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ child-rearing practices helps strengthen culture. It contributes to developing a strong feeling of belonging in children and families. In order to assist educators in the process of putting into practice a culturally responsive pedagogy, the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) makes available to them various tools and opportunities for professional development (Dinham et al., 2021). The purpose of the Commonwealth’s establishment of AITSL was to offer national leadership in promoting excellence and to ensure that teachers and school leaders in all Australian schools had the most significant possible influence on the education of their respective student bodies.
Additionally, the Australian Curriculum offers guidelines and tools for incorporating Indigenous views into teaching and learning across all topic areas. These may be found in each subject area. The incorporation of Indigenous viewpoints into the curriculum has been demonstrated by studies to improve the academic achievements of Indigenous students and build a sense of belonging and identity among these students. It is the goal of the Australian Curriculum to enhance learning outcomes for all young people in Australia by establishing national standards that are consistent and uniform (Nevill & Savage, 2022). It outlines, in the form of subject descriptions and achievement criteria, what children should be taught and what they should be able to accomplish as they go through the schooling system. Building a feeling of self-efficacy in indigenous students, attention to the needs of students who are the first generation in their families to attend college, and fostering connections between indigenous students and their classmates are all components of the curriculum that require students to reflect on their assumptions and to design for inclusion.
In conclusion, incorporating Indigenous worldviews into educational curricula is a duty that falls on the shoulders of educators in an endeavor to educate on language, culture, and communication. This obligation extends to the promotion of cultural responsiveness as well as the elimination of institutional racism, power, and privilege within the people and in society. We must dispel the idea that only Indigenous educators are qualified to teach Indigenous viewpoints and accept that we must ensure that our pupils have a well-rounded knowledge of Australia’s many different historical periods and cultural traditions. This builds on the student’s skills and well-being and the prevalence of the Australian culture in future generations. We can contribute to promoting reconciliation and social justice for all students if we look for opportunities for professional development, engage with local communities of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and include Indigenous viewpoints in our teaching practices.
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