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This paper presents a learning journey about deepening capacity for teaching with Place through relational learning and shares three pedagogical ingredients that are integral in enacting more ethical, decolonial place pedagogies. We are three women, educators working in community and teacher education with interests in environmental education, decoloniality and indigeneity. We write from the position of people whose ancestry is not Indigenous to the places we were born, nor those where we live now. We bring diverse experiences, voices, bodies and memories of Place into productive conversations as we think and write together about how we are learning with Place, and our response-abilities for enacting regenerative place pedagogies. We situate our emergent and relational inquiry within our experiences and encounters with Place in solidarity with the call for the sharing of stories that “explore knowing and being as relational practices” (Bawaka Country et al.). Our paper is premised on the understanding that our ethical commitment to decoloniality involves learning to live and learn with and love the places we are now, and prioritising Indigenous philosophies, scholarship and ways of knowing Place throughout our education practices.
The purpose of this communication is to explore possibilities for children’s literature to enable futures learning. It introduces the ways in which two different frameworks might be used to analyse children’s literature. The first framework draws upon the Earth Charter Principles (ECP) (Auld et al., 2021). The second framework brings together the pillars of sustainability with the principles of Education for Sustainability (EfS) in a framework for ecological sustainability of children’s literature (White et al., 2020). The communication starts by introducing a text – a recent example of ‘awarded’ and therefore high-quality children’s literature. We then outline the two frameworks and explore the possibilities of applying these frames for analysing this text. We conclude that the sustainability frameworks are useful tools and resources for analysing children’s literature to determine the quality of the text and how the experience of reading the text may impact children, their learning and their environmental consciousness and practices.
In these regenerative times prompted by the Anthropocene, Aboriginal voices are situated to draw on ancient wisdom for local learning and to share information across the globe as ecological imperative for planetary wellbeing. In this paper, postqualitative research foregrounds the sentient nature of life as ancestral power and brings the vitality of co-becoming as our places into active engagement. It enables coloniality to surface and reveals how it sits in our places and lives, in plain sight but unnoticed because of its so-called common sense. Postqualitative research relates with ancient knowledges in foregrounding Country’s animacy and presence, revealing the essence of time as non-linear, cyclical and perpetual. In this way, we are places, weather and climate, not separate. Postqualitative research also relates with ancient knowledge in illustrating Country as agentic and time as multiple, free of constraint and directly involved in our everyday. Country is active witness in the lives of Aboriginal peoples, here always. This is a strong basis for decolonisation. We all have a responsibility to listen, to help create a new direction for the future in the present time.
Two school strikers − Niamh and Harriet − come together with two environmental education academics − Peta and Joseph − to explore what it means to be young people enacting politics for the environment in Australia, and what this might mean for re-imagining education. Niamh and Harriet are leaders of, and were integral to initiating, the highly effective School Strike 4 Climate − Australia (SS4C) movement, enacting ‘principled disobedience’. Peta and Joseph work in teacher education, preparing future teachers who will teach students who are increasingly climate savvy and politically active. In coming together and through the lens of pragmatism, we highlight the political nature of what Niamh and Harriet have been undertaking as they negotiate social, cultural, educational and environmental issues implicated in the climate crisis. Collaborative autoethnography framed our exploration of motivations for action, politics and education within our communities. Through Niamh’s and Harriet’s experiences, we explore how young people express agency while developing identity. Our autoethnographic conversations highlighted the experience and political agency that many of our young people demonstrate and led to us reflecting on the resulting opportunity for educators to ‘dare to think’ differently about education.
A framework to critically consider the ecological sustainability messaging in children’s literature is presented to authors, illustrators and editors, as well as teachers, parents and students/children. We have applied this framework to three books from the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) 2015 Notables list using critical discourse analysis (CDA). Findings suggest that there are themes and images in these award-winning texts that do not support ecological sustainability and we argue that children’s literature should be judged with criteria including ecological sustainability. Our hope is that ecological sustainability principles and practices lead to changes in social discourse through intergenerational storytelling.
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