Standing Rock / Authentic Teaching

When the world and the classroom collide

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  1. She arrived, in tears, just as class was about to start. "It's been a rough day," she said. The government is moving in on Standing Rock. Clearing the camp. Making way for the pipeline. Buzzfeed had a live feed. Several people arrested. At least one person injured. The choppy feed showed muddy expanses, melting snow, and a line of veterans who came from across the country to help defend a sacred space from a pipeline.
  2. I told her we wanted her to lead discussion at her table this evening and offered to make other arrangements. "It's ok. I can do it," she said.
  3. But we needed to see what was happening and she agreed to tell us about it:
  4. She spoke of the loneliness of being an indigenous person in a place where the indigenous community is so small. She spoke of the heartache of watching indigenous people being extinguished right now, not just in the past, but right now.
  5. I felt helpless and complicit. Stuck. Without words.
  6. We switched off the live feed and turned our energies to teaching. How do you find your "teaching voice"? What makes that voice authentic?
  7. We'd consulted Sarah Deel, Seymor Papert, and Shelli Fowler.
  8. This is what we came up with:
  9. And while that was happening in Blacksburg, this was happening in North Dakota
  10. We don't have answers, but we do have questions and we know this is unfinished.
  11. We'll be here and we'll be back. And we will have @qjketchum's back.
  12. Mark your calendars for the FIRST ever Native At Virginia Tech PowWow:
  13. Back home. Hoping the camp survives the night. And grateful to @qjketchum for sharing with us. For letting us see what's been there all along, but is so easy not to see when there's so much else clamoring for attention.
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