Critical Summary – Reconciliation and Curriculum

For my critical summary I have chosen the topic of reconciliation and curriculum, focusing on Linda Radford’s theories. The main article I will be using is “Learning to teach for reconciliation in Canada: Potential, resistance and stumbling forward”. The article details a study of the findings from pre-service teachers experiences learning about reconciliation and responsibility. I believe this topic and article to be of great importance as teacher education can contribute so much towards reconciliation.

The article is part of a “growing body of research [that] looks at the ways education policy and curriculum initiatives are being used to address reconciliation agendas in societies divided by conflict or injustice” (Radford & Aitken, 2018). The article focuses on the heightened emotions caused from the topics of truth and reconciliation. The authors note that the resistance caused from this is “inevitable” but not “immobilizing”. Throughout the study three themes became evident among the pre-service teachers: new recognition, changes in self-awareness, and concerns over provoking learners’ emotional responses when teaching for reconciliation. The study acknowledges teachers resistance to teach reconciliation in the past and its consequential effects on the movement. The article seeks to uncover the social dynamics at play to reverse this effect.

My next steps for the assignment will be to find two more articles relating to the topic and one more scholar. My second scholar will be Nicholas Ng-A-Fook. He has several interesting articles about the topic including, “Spinning Curriculum Designs at a Crossroads: Big Ideas, Conversations, and Reconciliation,” which appears to be promising. That leaves me with one more scholar to find work on surrounding the subject. I will be comparing and contrasting these last two articles to “Learning to teach for reconciliation in Canada: Potential, resistance and stumbling forward”.

Aitken, A., and Radford, L. “Learning to teach for reconciliation in Canada: Potential, resistance and stumbling forward.” Science Direct 75 2018: 40-48. Web. 21 January 019.

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