On Decolonizing the Curriculum: Thoughts of a Black Pre-Service Teacher
The notion of “decolonizing the curriculum” is used in this inquiry to convey the dismantlement of inherited approaches to pedagogy. The ways in which we have been conditioned to learn (that is, our relationship with education) are part of the colonial heritage that has embedded our realms of becoming for generations since the first settlements. In this research project, and using the Currere Method, I detach myself from these inherited approaches to teaching and learning and put them into question. I first look back at my own experiences as a Black student in the French education system established on African soil. Then, I ponder on how I envision my own (current and future) classroom to look like based on my philosophy of education. The reflection that subsequently arises serves to bridge the gap between my own experiences as a student and how these experiences have translated into my philosophy of education and who I intend on becoming as a teacher. Finally, I close my Currere research with a recapitulation of my findings in each stage, how each one informed the other, and a memento. I share my most profound suggestions for my fellow pre-service teachers of color. My project is, in itself, an ode to all the students and educators who did not necessarily have the opportunity to voice their need for change at the individual level.
Keywords: decolonization, Critical Race Theory, pedagogy, curriculum, inclusive pedagogy, reflexive teaching, Funds of Knowledge, Funds of Identity
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