Teaching

Bachelor of Education Program

PED 3103 Curriculum Design and Evaluation (Fall Term 2012):

In this course students are invited to study an overview of major Canadian curriculum theorists and educational movements; examine the possibilities and limitations of the Ontario curriculum policy documents; develop their theoretical and practical understandings of the curriculum-as-planned, -implemented, and -lived; study the theories, political issues, and pedagogical strategies for assessing teaching and learning; and investigate the different curricular and pedagogical strategies implicated with integrating differentiated instruction and 2.0 technologies into their teaching.

A key objective of this course is for students to consider their roles as a teacher challenging social inequalities. Creating unit and assessment plans is one of the most central, creative, and challenging activities teachers engage in over the course of their teaching careers. Effective planning can be achieved in a number of ways. One method of organizing instruction and assessment is to develop a unit of study utilizing the principles of backward design. During this course students are afforde opportunities to develop a unit plan as part of a larger social justice project. In school settings a team of teachers often constructs unit and assessment plans as a professional learning community (PLC). As such, students work in teams of 4-5 people on this assignment as a collaborative community of inquirers.

The overall content of students’ social action curriculum projects need to address at least on of the following themes: 1) Peace and/or social justice; 2) Human rights issue; 3) Environmental sustainability; and/or 4) International development issue. For examples of such issues please visit the following website: www.developingaglobalperspective.ca.

PED 3103 Curriculum Design and Evaluation (Fall Terms 2009 to 2011):

In this course students are invited to study an overview of major Canadian curriculum theorists and educational movements; examine the possibilities and limitations of the Ontario curriculum policy documents; develop their theoretical and practical understandings of the curriculum-as-planned, -implemented, and -lived; study the theories, political issues, and pedagogical strategies for assessing teaching and learning; and investigate the different curricular and pedagogical strategies implicated with integrating differentiated instruction and 2.0 technologies into their teaching.

This year as part we developed a community service learning partnership with Earth Day Canada and EcoKids. During the course Bachelor of Education students have the option to develop lesson plans which in turn focuse on sustainable development for their lesson plan assignment. In turn they submitted for publication on the EcoKids website. The following students lesson plans were chosen for publication Jill Seymour (Circle of Life, 2009); Catherine Lyons (Earth Day Number Sense, 2009); Courtney Micucci (Worms! Nature’s Recyclers, 2009); Maxine Wiseman (The Hazards of Common Household Chemicals, 2011); Ashley Fisher (Recreate and Bash the Trash, 2011); and Catherine Costa (Reducing Global Consumption, 2011). For the full lesson plans with all appendices please visit the EcoKids website. Other students who developed lesson plans which focus on social justice, peace, international develop, and environmental sustainability published their lesson plans on the Developing A Global Perspective for Educators website each year. There are over 15 new lessons and/or unit plans published for the 2010-2012 academic year.

Bibliography and reading schedule for course.

PED 3102 Schooling and Society (Winter Terms 2009 to 2011):

Click here for 2011 course syllabus

In this course, students are asked to engage the interdisciplinary study of schooling and its social contexts; deconstruct the roles of teachers in reproducing and challenging social inequalities; and make narrative inquiries into the social, cultural, and psychological influences on identity. Consequently, the course curriculum is designed to examine the social foundations of education, which includes, but is not limited to, the philosophical, social, psychological, cultural, environmental dynamics of public schooling as well as the historical politics of schooling here in Canada and abroad. The course also integrates 2.0 technologies and a community service learning component that focus on the roles that schooling systems, provincial governments, local communities, teachers, and students play in negotiating, resisting, and appropriating not only a system that often reproduces social inequalities and injustices, but also the sociocultural and material capital—we often call “privilege.” Through readings, dialogue, observation, presentations, in class activities, community-based social action projects, and reflection, students are encouraged to develop various theoretical concepts and language as a praxis for critiquing the purposes and ends of education as well as to create a more “nuanced” understanding of their roles as future “professional” educators and what some might call “public intellectuals.”

In April of 2008, as part of the community service learning component of the course, twelve bachelor of education students travelled to Raceland Louisiana to work with the United Houma Nation. The Community Service Learning program at the University of Ottawa funded this international community service learning project. Upon their return the students created a Newsletter and radio podcast which described their lived experiences during their trip to the American South (no monolithic place to be sure) to work with the largest Franco-aboriginal community in Louisiana.

In 2009 the students participate in various local social action project which were also tied into the community service program. For example students raised funds for the Guatemalan Stove Project, Pennies for Pencils, and clothing and food for homeless in Ottawa, as well as developing educational resources that focused on social justice, peace, international development and environmental sustainability (such as the Where do you get Coltan? resource booklet).

This term the Global Cohort will participate in a joint community service learning project to develop curriculum materials with the Kitigan Zibi’s Anishinabeg School Board.

Bibliography and reading schedule for the course (2010).

Teaching Philosophy: Nicholas Ng-A-Fook is deeply committed toward integrating various community service learning projects within the courses he teaches at the Faculty of Education. In 2007, he travelled with Bachelor of Education students to Raceland, Louisiana to work with the United Houma Nation who suffered the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina. The Houma people continue to rebuild their infrastructure despite suffering the continued frontline effects of recurring hurricanes and the recent Gulf of Mexico oil spill. As part of this international CSL project students worked with elders at a New Orleans Jazz Festival non-profit food booth, created podcasts to share their stories, and attended eco-justice workshops with indigenous community activists. As director of A Canadian Curriculum Theory Project, an associate member of the Making History/Faire Histoire Educational Research Unit, and Developing A Global Perspective for Educators organization Nicholas Ng-A-Fook continues to work toward building educational partnerships with international and local indigenous communities like the United Houma Nation and the Kitigan Zibi. This academic year he continues to work with non-profit organizations like Eco-Kids, Pathways, Canadian Hunger Foundation, Aga-Khan, Nature Chelsea, and indigenous communities like the Kitigan Zibi. He remains deeply indebted to colleagues, committed teacher-candidates, generous community partners, the Community Service Learning Center, and the people who work there and continue to support the social justice orientated work he does within his teaching here at the Faculty of Education.

Graduate Program

EDU 6102 Seminar in Curriculum Studies (2012 Winter Term, Hybrid Course):

This course is a critical examination of research within the field of Canadian curriculum studies. Each week try to examine the various methodological approaches utilized by different curriculum scholars working at Canadian university to conduct educational research within the broader field of curriculum studies. Moreover students enrolled in this course study and apply different methodological strategies to deconstruct the discrepancies between various disciplinary frameworks, which in turn inform curriculum theorizing, government policy, and its respective implementation both inside and outside the classroom. In turn, our weekly face-to-face and online conversations critically examine how such discrepancies within the research literature create tensions among the various internal and external stakeholders to the field of curriculum studies, and the school curriculum writ large.

For scope and sequencing of course content click here.

EDU 5260 Introduction to Curriculum Studies (2011 Fall Term, Hybrid course):

Curriculum Studies is an intellectually dynamic and ever changing field. For curriculum scholars engaging the processes of situating and defining curriculum theorizing and development remains a historically situated and contested “complicated conversation.” Furthermore, within the context of this course certain curricular issues will be contradictory, confusing, and paradoxical. As a result, each week we will try to re-conceptualize and complicate our historical, present, and future understandings of the discrepancies between various disciplinary discourses, which in turn inform curriculum theorizing and development. Moreover, our weekly conversations will critically examine how such discrepancies create tensions between both internal and external stakeholders to the field of curriculum studies and the school curriculum writ large. This course thus invites us to participate in a personal dialogue, indeed a “complicated conversation,” in which we will be asked to recursively consider alternative approaches to curriculum theorizing and development, and in turn with the conversational issues that these alternatives involve.

Bibliography and readings schedule for course. Sample online modules as pdf files only: Module 2, Module 4

EDU 5265 Internationalization of Curriculum Studies Online Course (2011 Spring/Summer Session):

Curriculum Studies is an intellectually dynamic and ever changing field. For curriculum scholars situating and defining the broader international field of curriculum studies and its development remains a historically situated and contested “complicated conversation.” Therefore within the context of this course our study of certain international educational issues will be contradictory, contested, and sometimes paradoxical. As a result, each week we will try to reconceptualize and complicate our historical, present, and future understandings of the discrepancies between various international and interdisciplinary discourses, which in turn inform curriculum studies and its historical development both here in Canada and abroad.

Internationalization of Curriculum Studies 5265 is a graduate course designed to:

  1. Investigate historical and contemporary educational issues taken up within the international field of curriculum studies;
  2. Introduce alternative curricular arrangements within global, national, and local contexts; and
  3. Understand the historical and present effects of various trends in international and transnational curriculum movements.

By the end of the course students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an ability to describe and analyze the historical and/or existing curricular movements taking place within the international field of curriculum studies;
  2. Illustrate an understanding of the curriculum theories, which inform such movements;
  3. Engage in the playful processes of curriculum theorizing (and if needed, translating such theoretical implications in relation to our online discussions around international curriculum reform movements and implications for classroom practices).

Bibliography and Reading Schedule for Spring/Summer Session 2011.

For sample online modules in pdf versions only click here: Module 1, Module 3

EDU 5260 Introduction to Curriculum Studies (Winter 2011):

This course provides an overview of recurring curriculum issues in historical and contemporary perspectives; introduction to the practices of curriculum theorizing; investigation of the effects of shifting paradigms within the field of curriculum studies.

Curriculum Studies is an intellectually dynamic and ever changing field. For curricularists engaging the processes of situating and defining curriculum theorizing and development remains a historically situated and contested “complicated conversation.” Furthermore, within the context of this course certain curricular issues will be contradictory, confusing, and paradoxical. As a result, each week we will try to reconceptualize and complicate our historical, present, and future understandings of the discrepancies between various disciplinary discourses, which in turn inform curriculum theorizing and development. Moreover, our weekly conversations will critically examine how such discrepancies create tensions between both internal and external stakeholders to the field of curriculum studies, and the school curriculum writ large. This course thus invites us to participate in a personal dialogue, indeed a “complicated conversation,” in which we will be asked to recursively consider alternative approaches to curriculum theorizing and development, and in turn with the conversational issues that these alternatives involve.

EDU 6460 Curriculum Culture and Language (Fall 2010):

The course provides an opportunity for students to examine of the ways in which curriculum works to reproduce and/or suppress certain identities; interdisciplinary inquiries into how current curricular language is situated in relation to identity formations; deconstruction of the marginalization of identities across various curricular contexts.

EDU 5463 Cultural Studies, Educational Theory, and Praxis (Winter 2010):

This course introduces graduate students to the interdisciplinary study of contemporary popular culture including theories of representation, texts, social identities, and their implications for school practices. During this course students develop theoretical strategies for describing and analyzing the historical and/or existing mass/subcultural movements that inform our understanding of popular culture within the context of cultural studies and educational theory as a form of praxis. In turn students learn various analytical strategies for utilizing educational theory to deconstruct/disrupt “normative” representations of identities depicting youth represented in texts, media, etc.; and in turn the implications for classroom practice. Finally, students engage in the playful processes of communicating such theorizing (and if needed, translating theoretical concepts in relation to our discussions around classroom practices) through writing and course presentations.

Bibliography and reading schedule for course (2010).

EDU 5265 Internationalization of Curriculum Studies (Fall 2009):

This course provides students opportunities to study contemporary issues in curriculum studies within an international context; study curriculum reform initiatives in other countries; examine current trends in international and transnational curriculum movements; and explore of alternative curricular arrangements within global, national, and local contexts.

Curriculum Studies is an intellectually dynamic and ever changing field. For curricularists engaging the processes of situating and defining curriculum theorizing and development remains a historically situated and contested “complicated conversation.” Furthermore, within the context of this course certain international curricular issues will be contradictory, confusing, and paradoxical. As a result, during this course students study the ways we might reconceptualize and complicate our historical, present, and future understandings of the discrepancies between various interdisciplinary discourses, which in turn inform curriculum theorizing and development both here in Canada and abroad.

Bibliography and reading schedule for the course (2009).

EDU 5260 Introduction to Curriculum Studies (Winter of 2009):

This course encourages students to study recurring curriculum issues in historical and contemporary perspectives, the practices of curriculum theorizing, and effects of shifting paradigms within the field of curriculum studies. Canadian Curriculum Studies is an intellectually dynamic and ever changing field. Curriculum theorizing and development remains a historically situated and contested “complicated conversation” (Pinar, 2007). Consequently, within the context of this course students study certain curricular issues that are contradictory, confusing, and paradoxical. In turn, each week students work to reconceptualize and complicate our historical, present, and future understandings of the discrepancies between various disciplinary discourses, which inform practices for curriculum theorizing and development. Moreover, our weekly conversations during this course work to critically examine how such discrepancies create tensions between both internal and external stakeholders to the field of curriculum studies, and the school curriculum writ large. This course thus invites students to participate in a personal dialogue, indeed a “complicated conversation,” in which they are asked to recursively consider alter/native approaches to curriculum theorizing and development.

Bibliography and reading schedule for course (2009).

  • EDU 5221 Historical Narratives and Education (Winter of 2008)

Teaching Philosophy:

I teach graduate courses as a writer’s workshop series. During the course we focus on improving graduate students’ overall academic writing. Consequently each assignment in a course like Introduction to Curriculum Studies (EDU 5260), works toward improving the aesthetics of a student’s overall writing skills as they study and theorize with the intellectual content of different readings. I also utilize a life writing research methodology to frame the scope and sequencing of course content and respective assignments. In turn, many students are introduced to both the possibilities and limitations of utilizing life writing as a methodological approach for engaging educational research within the broader field of curriculum studies.

I structure graduate courses around the four following assignments: 1) A reader response; 2) A curriculum artifact presentation or a curriculum scholar review; 3) A curriculum artifact paper; and 4) A final paper. To help students understand the aesthetics and structural expectations of academic writing, I reread and edit multiple drafts of the reader responses prior to students presenting them to peers in class. Students then read them to the entire class. Each course ends on the last night with a Provoking Curriculum Studies Graduate Student Conference. At the conference students take turns sharing their papers on panels to each other during two 75-minute sessions. Students who write outstanding papers are invited to publish their work on this website or submit their piece to a curriculum studies journal.

I experiment with utilizing social networking platforms like www.ning.com to help facilitate my teaching within graduate courses. For example in Cultural Studies, Educational Theory, and Praxis students are invited to post three blogs that provided a semiotic analysis of a cultural artifact. The social networking site also provides a digital forum where students can integrate the readings, video, music, and print to communicate and represent their analysis of the artifact within the blogs. During each lecture, I show numerous popular culture films like the School of Rock, the Matrix, documentaries like Refugees of the Deep Blue Planet, High School, and Strange Fruit, and TED talks to provoke a “complicated conversation” about the various educational issues we take up in class (Pinar, 2006).