Chris Waugh, Gena Bagley and Renee Plunkett are teachers of English and we share our teaching experiences with Kathy Dedo – a parent of two students who go to our school and Anna Brown, a learning assistant – both of whom add their perspective to our otherwise rather myopic perception of the school we work in.
Threaded through the podcast are artifacts that we collect from an ‘ordinary’ school week that fill us with wonder, delight – and sometimes abject horror.
We are embarking on an ambitious project to convert our system of assessment at the college into a modern microcredentialling system. In doing so we are looking far and wide for assistance and input to ensure the baby doesn’t go out with the bathwater.
You’ll hear from some of our esteemed colleagues in the educational firmament in New Zealand – and abroad – as well as the voices of our students, their parents, our colleagues and community.
You can be heard too – email us at any time on firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us via twitter on @edutronic_net
Back on Track - Gender, Sexuality and Race
With a lot of change in our school, including the departure of our principal, the appointment of a Limited Statutory Manager and the on-going impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on our school lives, we've been trying to consider ways that we can contribute to the growth and development of our school as we take a good hard look at ourselves. Chris relays a staff development session he was part of which was designed to 'start the conversation' about our obligations to our students and their diverse gender identities and sexualities. Simultaneously, Renee has been working with a group of students who have been working on a way to open up a conversation about race in the school. We explain how these are being put together, and how they have been received.
Korero - Tawhiri, Taki and Hadley
This week we explore the experiences of three 16 year old students who relay their experiences working to challenge prejudice in our school community. We can all learn a lot from the humility, generosity and wisdom of these young men. If you happen to teach English, it's definitely worth listening right to the very end of this one!
How to challenge sexism
Kathy came in on an avid conversation in Chris' class this week. Some students were discussing an incident of sexist language and attitude in a classroom, and how they'd spoken up. This podcast carries that conversation on: Kathy, Kelly (a student teacher who is currently on placement in Renee's classroom) Renee and Chris discuss what advice we would want to give these students about 'what to say next' when the usual defences are trotted out "Political correctness gone mad", or even "You're just being emotional". Emotional? Who? Me?
Being Gender Non-Binary in a Rural School
Our school has recently made some forays into the realm of LGBTQI+ inclusiveness. It's complex terrain, so to add to the conversation See Me After Class is interviewing some of our students who identify as LGBTQI+ to gain an insight into what life looks like from their point of view. This week Chris spoke to Ollie who identifies as Queer and is gender non-binary. It's a fascinating insight with useful material for teachers, parents and students alike.
Your Podcasters' Identity
Identity has become a theme for See Me After Class in recent months. As a result, and in the rare event that all four of the team found ourselves in one place, we decided to explore aspects of our own identity and how this might affect our way of relating to the world and the school. Anna's reflections on the curiosity of her children when they encounter Ollie (from Episode 51) on the way to school were fascinating, and even more than this her experiences as a migrant, relating to students who are migrants and finding commonality with them underlined the true importance of having your identity acknowledged and reflected in our school.
With more interviews impending with students whose identities don’t fit the norm, and for whom life in school can be a real challenge at times, Kathy, Anna and Chris continue to explore their own identity and encounter yet more buzzwords. Intersectionality is a term that helps us to decode the complex interplay between different aspects of our identity, but in the end, how do we answer the question: “Who are we?”