University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
The Student Teachers Anti-Racism Society (STARS) promotes anti-racism education at the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan through the support of the College. We work collaboratively to understand, identify, and address individual and systemic racism and its interlocking forms of oppression based on gender, sexuality, ability, class, religion and other socially constructed categories. We believe that anti-racist and decolonizing education, when woven together, can create humanizing and emancipatory change for everyone.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

ReVision Quest: Lesson ideas from summer time radio

Check out the new summer time line up of CBC's ReVision Quest with Darrell Dennis: http://www.cbc.ca/revisionquest/schedule/. You can subscribe to podcasts and use episodes in the classroom: http://www.cbc.ca/revisionquest/episodes/. The show can be used to introduce some very serious topics to students and will hopefully prompt further anti-racist discussion, inquiry and action. It's an awesome show, take a listen!

About the Show ReVision Quest mixes personal storytelling, current affairs interviews and comedy to explore issues affecting Native peoples today, kicking some ass-umptions about Aboriginal life along the way. It's a show about the First Nations experience, created by all First Nations producers.

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Darrell Dennis: Originally from the Shuswap First Nation in B.C., RVQ host Darrell Dennis is an actor, comedian and screen writer. He's best known for his roles in Northwood, The Rez, and as host of Bingo and a Movie. Darrell has had two plays produced (Trickster of Third Avenue East and Tales of An Urban Indian) and wrote the short film Mocassin Flats which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and went on to become the TV series. After two years with the Second City National Touring Company, Darrell co-founded the comedy troupe Tonto's Nephews. Darrell was recently one of 13 people selected throughout the world to participate in the prestigious Sundance Writer's Lab. But his favourite thing to do is host ReVision Quest. Aw...
See more about the producers: http://www.cbc.ca/revisionquest/about/

Friday, June 24, 2011

Old School Sesame Street: Indians Don't Talk Like That

While looking for anti-racism kindergarten resources I came across this on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuJzKVF_gxQ

There's a lot we can do with this one little piece. Some ideas...

1. Ask students why the boys think Indians talk like that, where do they learn this message? What does this message tell us about Indians? Why is this wrong and what are the consequences?
2. Why are Indians the 'bad guys'? Why are white people the 'good guys'? What is wrong with these ideas? Explain that thinking of and describing people who have dark skin as 'bad' is racism.
3. Where does the term Indian come from and what are more respectful names we use today? Define First Nations, Metis and Inuit. Who are First Nations and Metis people in Saskatchewan?

Film: 3rd World Canada

A film recommended by Dr. Verna St. Denis. Trailer and order information: http://www.thirdworldcanada.ca/3rd-world-canada-the-movie
Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (the people of the lake) is a remote Native community bound by reserve laws in the forgotten North of Ontario. This Nation dates back to 7,000 years where bones of their ancestors were discovered on the shores of Big Trout Lake. Today this proud Nation is deeply impoverished in 3rd World conditions bound by Treaty laws signed, by their non-English speaking ancestors. Set in the backdrop of the aftermath of the suicide of three parents, the documentary explores the impact of 3rd world conditions on the children left behind and a community’s courage in looking after them.
In her fifth film, Gemini-nominee, Andrée Cazabon brings to light the impact of reserve conditions through the poignant testimonies of community, children and youth. Filmed with the participation of the Nation of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, Ontario and funded by the Ontario Arts Council, Laidlaw Foundation, The Law Foundation, the Atkinson Charitable Foundation and Wasaya Airways.
Executive Producer, Writer and Director: Andrée Cazabon
Cinematographer and Editor: Peter Shatalow
All rights reserved - Productions Cazabon
running time: 46 minutes

Monday, June 20, 2011

Native Science and Western Science: Possibilities for Collaboration

To watch this excellent video resource of Dr. Leroy Little Bear see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycQtQZ9y3lc

Leroy Little Bear delivers the Spring 2011 Simon Ortiz and Labriola Center Lecture on Indigenous Land, Culture and Community.

Recorded March 24, 2011 at the Heard Museum in Phoenix, Arizona

Leroy Little Bear is a member of the Blood Tribe of the Blackfoot Confederacy (Canada). Head of the SEED Gradu­ate Institute, which seeks to integrate existing fields of learning, including science and cosmology as well as other disciplines, with Indigenous worldviews, he is former Director of the American Indian Program at Harvard University and Professor Emeritus of Native Studies at the University of Lethbridge where he was department chair for 25 years. Little Bear has served as a legal and constitu­tional advisor to the Assembly of First Nations and has served on many commit­tees, commissions, and boards dealing with First Nations issues. In 2003, Little Bear was awarded the prestigious Na­tional Aboriginal Achievement Award for Education, the highest honor bestowed by Canada's First Nations community. In 2006, he was awarded an honorary doc­torate by the University of Lethbridge. He has written several articles and co-edited three books including Pathways to Self-Determination: Canadian Indians and the Canadian State (1984), Quest for Justice: Aboriginal Peoples and Aboriginal Rights (1985), and Governments in Conflict and In­dian Nations in Canada (1988). He is also contributor to Reclaiming Indigenous Voice and Vision (UBC Press, 2000).

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Choose Your Voice: Free Resources! Grades 6, 7 & 8

This free resource includes various lessons on historical acts/systems of racism in Canada including lessons on slavery, the Anti-Asian Riots in Vancouver, and Residential Schools among many others. More current examples of oppression are also included. This resource (the recipient of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation Award of Excellence 2010) focuses on teaching students about the importance of speaking out against oppression and provides profiles of many Canadians who have risked their lives to helps others. It is a good introduction to anti-racism education and can be modified and supported with additional resources (i.e. lessons on white privilege, power inequities, patriarchy and colonialism). For more information see the Fighting AntiSemitism Together website

Choose Your Voice: Antisemitism in Canada
Educational Program for grades 6, 7 and 8 students:
- DVD in 4 segments (Duration: 22 minutes)
- Teacher’s Guide with 4 lesson plans or activities; DVD Discussion Guide
Provincial Curriculum Connections
The Choose Your Voice resource kit was originally designed for teachers of students in Grades 6, 7 and 8 based on provincial curriculum requirements. It is also adaptable for high school students, ESL and gifted learners.
The kit gives teachers tools to help their students learn about the dangers of hatred and stereotypes, and find their voices to combat them. It encourages students not to be bystanders or perpetrators but heroes, by speaking out.
It meets curriculum requirements for many different subjects:
Language Arts – English, French, Writing
Social Sciences – History, World Issues
Physical Education – Health Unit
Arts – Drama, Music, Visual Art and Dance

It is also used in programs for Safe Schools, Character Education, Anti-bullying and Holocaust Education. It was designed to be flexible so that lessons can be taught individually or as a unit.
The kit contains four lesson plans, written by a team of teachers and curriculum experts. Each lesson contributes to a better understanding of the ways in which we construct stereotypes and the ways in which prejudice and misunderstanding have contributed to our past and our present in Canada.
Fact sheets on specific incidents can be used for research and relate to the goals of the lesson. Many different racial minorities are profiled. The kit also contains an award-winning DVD with compelling messages about the dangers of antisemitism and racism.
Our new English kit includes a free poster (20” wide by 30” deep) for classrooms, libraries and hallways. Download the FAST poster in PDF format (206 Kb).
Fact sheets on specific incidents can be used for research and relate to the goals of the lesson. Many different racial minorities are profiled. The kit also contains an award-winning DVD with compelling messages about the dangers of antisemitism and racism.
To order a bilingual version please see our French site.
For information about the Choose Your Voice Education Program, please click on order your free copy or Contacts.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

What Would You Do? Racial Profiling

Shopping While Black is a video about a social experiment on racial profiling in America from the television show What Would You Do? 

Watch more episodes at ABC News "What Would You do?" There are many video clips you can use in the classroom on racism, homophobia, ableism, classism and other forms of discrimination. As with many other resources on this blog, the videos can spur critical thought about racism and other interlocking systems of oppression in Saskatchewan through first thinking about and understanding how racism/oppression operates in a different location. Racial profiling in Saskatchewan is something we need to start talking about more openly with all students. It is real, it happens and only we as a community can stop it.

To support the What Would You Do video on racial profiling there are many resources available on line. One resource comes from the CBC: http://www.cbc.ca/player/Radio/The+Current/ID/2360236229/

What is racial profiling? Racial profiling is usually defined in a law enforcement context. One study published in the Canadian Review of Policing Research defined it as "a racial disparity in police stop and search practices, customs searches at airports and border-crossings, in police patrols in minority neighbourhoods and in undercover activities or sting operations which target particular ethnic groups."

The Ontario Human Rights Commission took a broader approach, defining it as "any action undertaken for reasons of safety, security or public protection that relies on stereotypes about race, colour, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, or place of origin rather than on reasonable suspicion, to single out an individual for greater scrutiny or different treatment."
Racial profiling is usually defined in a law enforcement context.
The OHRC gives some non-police-related examples of what it considers racial profiling:
  • School officials suspend a Latino child for violating the school's zero tolerance policy while a white child's behaviour is excused as being normal child's play.
  • An employer insists on stricter security clearance for a Muslim employee after the Sept. 11 attacks.
  • A bar refuses to serve Aboriginal customers because of a belief they will get drunk and rowdy.
Accusations of differential treatment arise in areas where authorities can exercise their discretion. If police stopped every car, or if customs officers directed everyone for follow-up scrutiny, there would be no talk of racial profiling. But when that discretion is exercised, members of many minority groups feel that they come out with the short end of the baton – that they somehow always have to prove their innocence.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

UN Cyberschoolbus

These lesson plans can be used to introduce students to anti-racism education. As students begin to understand how racism was/is used to justify the Holocaust and Apartheid, this awareness can be used to understand, recognize and work against racism in Canada today.

 UN Cyber School Bus website

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