Locating Difference With Teacher Candidates
Keywords:teacher education, difference, equity,
How to teach about difference is critical to education. This paper discusses teaching about difference in locations or contexts where the majority of teacher candidates were of the dominant culture. As a teacher educator, I have worked with teacher candidates on becoming aware of the relationships between their subject positions and the subject positions of others. The exploration of those relationships was contextualized by the different physical locations and teaching and learning environments, within which privilege, dominance, and marginalization were constructed and experienced in specific forms. This paper relates my emerging pedagogy for teaching about difference, as well as describing some teacher candidates’ perspectives on learning about difference. It reflects on my experiences teaching courses in multiculturalism and social justice in two specific locations: the teaching and learning department of a small American university in North Dakota and an education faculty in Manitoba. For teacher candidates positioned within dominant culture, difference can be uncomfortable. Teaching about difference meaningfully and navigating this discomfort is central to teacher education oriented to equity.
Keywords: Teacher education, difference, equity
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