Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives into the School Curriculum: Purposes, Possibilities, and Challenges

By Yatta Kanu

© 2011

From improved critical thinking to increased self-esteem and school retention, teachers and students have noted many benefits to bringing Aboriginal viewpoints into public school classrooms. In Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives Into the School Curriculum, Yatta Kanu provides the first comprehensive study of how these frameworks can be effectively implemented to maximize Indigenous students' engagement, learning, and academic achievement.

Based on six years of empirical research, Kanu offers insights from youths, instructors, and school administrators, highlighting specific elements that make a difference in achieving positive educational outcomes. Drawing on a wide range of disciplines, from cognitive psychology to civics, her findings are widely applicable across both pedagogical subjects and diverse cultural groups.

Kanu combines theoretical analysis and practical recommendations to emphasize the need for fresh thinking and creative experimentation in developing curricula and policy. Amidst global calls to increase school success for Indigenous students, this work is a timely and valuable addition to the literature on Aboriginal education.

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  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 240 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.8in x 9.0in
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SKU# SP003026

  • PUBLISHED FEB 2011

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    ISBN 9781442611320
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Quick Overview

In Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives Into the School Curriculum, Yatta Kanu provides the first comprehensive study of how these frameworks can be effectively implemented to maximize Indigenous students' engagement, learning, and academic achievement.

Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives into the School Curriculum: Purposes, Possibilities, and Challenges

By Yatta Kanu

© 2011

From improved critical thinking to increased self-esteem and school retention, teachers and students have noted many benefits to bringing Aboriginal viewpoints into public school classrooms. In Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives Into the School Curriculum, Yatta Kanu provides the first comprehensive study of how these frameworks can be effectively implemented to maximize Indigenous students' engagement, learning, and academic achievement.

Based on six years of empirical research, Kanu offers insights from youths, instructors, and school administrators, highlighting specific elements that make a difference in achieving positive educational outcomes. Drawing on a wide range of disciplines, from cognitive psychology to civics, her findings are widely applicable across both pedagogical subjects and diverse cultural groups.

Kanu combines theoretical analysis and practical recommendations to emphasize the need for fresh thinking and creative experimentation in developing curricula and policy. Amidst global calls to increase school success for Indigenous students, this work is a timely and valuable addition to the literature on Aboriginal education.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 240 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.8in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    As a teacher training instructor, I can attest to the long-overdue need for Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives into the School Curriculum. It has arrived at a critical moment as school boards and certification bodies seek input on how to effectively build Aboriginal perspectives into standard teaching practices. Yatta Kanu, a gifted writer, brings knowledge and firsthand experience to this engaging blend of argument, research, and how-to guide. With a logical, easy-to-understand format and end-of-chapter learning resources, Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives into the School Curriculum will be appreciated by educators and teachers-in-training taking up the challenge of integration.
    Jean-Paul Restoule, Adult Education and Counselling Psychology, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

    A significant resource for teachers, Integrating Aboriginal Perspectives into the School Curriculum extensively explores the challenges and contexts of bringing Aboriginal culture into mainstream public school classrooms. Yatta Kanu's insights into the unique conditions and educational struggles of Aboriginal students in urban environments are specific and cogent.
    Michael Marker, Department of Educational Studies, University of British Columbia
  • Author Information

    Yatta Kanu is a professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Manitoba.

  • Table of contents

    Acknowledgments
    Preface

    Chapter 1: Introduction: Integrating Aboriginal perspectives into school curricula: Why does it matter now
    Introduction
    The call to integrate Aboriginal perspectives
    Centrality of cultural mediation in human learning and development
    The effort to reconnect Aboriginal education to its cultural roots
    Integration for intimate and cultural citizenship
    Increasing our knowledge-base in a knowledge society
    Raising essential curriculum questions
    Organization of the book
    To generalize or not to generalize
    On the use of terminology
    Summary
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings

    Chapter 2: Understanding the integration of Aboriginal perspectives through theory
    Introduction
    Role of theory in understanding phenomena
    Theoretical frameworks for understanding minority school performance
    ----Socio-cultural theories of learning and cognition
    ----Macro-structural theories/explanations
    ----Racism, anti-racism, and critical race theories
    Summary
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings

    Chapter 3: Cultural mediators of Aboriginal student learning in the formal school system
    Introduction
    Investigating the influence of culture on Aboriginal student learning through a cultural-historical approach
    Research methods/ procedures
    Aboriginal students identify cultural mediators of their learning
    Related themes
    Theme 1: Indigenous approaches to learning
    ----Learning through stories and anecdotes
    ----Learning by observing and emulating
    ----Community support encourages learning
    ----Learning through scaffolding
    ----Learning through visual sensory modalities
    Theme 2: Effective oral interaction enhances learning
    Theme3: Concepts of self mediate learning
    Theme4: Relevant Curriculum increases learning
    Theme 5: Teacher's interpersonal style matters
    Summary
    Concluding remark
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings

    Chapter 4: Integrating Aboriginal perspectives into the school curriculum: Layering at five levels of classroom practice
    Introduction
    Defining 'Aboriginal perspectives': The challenge of definition
    Guiding principles for integrating Aboriginal perspectives
    The context of integration
    Integrating Aboriginal perspectives: Layering at five levels of practice
    ----Integrating at the level of student learning outcomes
    ----Integrating at the level of content/learning resources
    ----Integrating at the level of instructional methods/strategies
    ----Integrating at the level of assessment methods/strategies
    ----Integration as a philosophical underpinning of the curriculum
    Summary
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings

    Chapter 5: Aboriginal school success through integration? Learning opportunities and Challenges
    Introduction
    Documenting the impact of integration: Methods and procedures
    Results: Impact of integration:
    ----Impact on academic achievement
    ----Impact on school retention
    ----Impact on class attendance/regularity
    Challenges
    Concluding remark
    Summary
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings

    Chapter 6: Critical elements of instruction influencing Aboriginal school success
    Introduction
    Teacher's sense of efficacy
    Teacher capacity
    Culturally compatible teaching and assessment methods
    Targeting Aboriginal content and resources
    A nurturing learning environment
    Summary and caveat
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings
    Appendix A

    Chapter 7: Teachers' perceptions of the integration of Aboriginal perspectives
    Introduction
    Centrality of the teacher to curriculum change
    Investigating teachers' perceptions: Methods and procedures
    Teachers' perceptions:
    ----Teachers' beliefs about integration
    ----How teachers understand and approach integration
    ----What teachers perceive as challenges/impediments
    ----Facilitators of integration
    Summary
    Concluding remark
    Questions for discussion
    References/Recommended readings

    Chapter 8: A way forward: Lessons in implementation
    Introduction
    On the need for a reconceptualized theory of curriculum
    ----Curriculum as curere
    ----Curriculum as spiritual journey/transcendence
    ----Curriculum as conversation
    ----Curriculum as community
    Teachers and teacher education programs
    What schools should do
    How the Aboriginal community can help
    The need for systemic reform
    Summary
    Questions for discussion
    References/recommended readings

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