Decolonizing Indigenous-newcomer relations: What does it mean to TESL practitioners?

Date: Friday, May 12th, 2023. 4:00 p.m. Presenter: Hyunjung Shin Registration is open until 6:00pm, May 11, 2023.

2023 TESL Saskatchewan PD Event

Date: Saturday, May 12th, 2023. 4:00 p.m.

Registration is open!

As people in Canada currently live in an era of truth and reconciliation, there is an increased public awareness of the importance of improving the lived realities of Indigenous peoples and healing and repairing setttler-Indigenous relationships. In reality, however, few Canadians have learned about settler–Indigenous relations and history in this country through the formal education system. As for newcomers to Canada, little previous understanding of settler colonialism in Canada creates challenges for understanding experiences of Indigenous peoples in Canada. In 2015, the TRC produced a report that includes 94 calls to action. Particularly, Call 93 recognizes the need for newcomers to Canada to be made aware of Canadian history regarding treaties and residential schools. This presents TESL practitioners with both challenges and unique opportunities in their classrooms to rebuild Indigenous-newcomer relationships regarding distinct local manifestations of Truth and Reconciliation and settler colonialism in Canada, becuase English language classrooms are often a first stop for many Canadian newcomers.

In this PD session, participants are invited to share their challenges, concerns, and questions in their efforts to decolonize Indigenous-newcomer relations in their practice. TESL professionals have a critical role to play in helping new Canadians, immigrants, and international students in their classrooms to recognize and critically examine colonial history, discourses and representations of Indigenous peoples in Canada, but there is insufficient support to help them to figure out where to begin or who to connect with. Through a collaborative inquiry, participants will gain a shared understanding of key issues, theoretical knowledge informed by research on this topic, and some practical tips to use in their own classroom.

Hyunjung Shin's Biography

Hyunjung Shin is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Curriculum Studies at the University of Saskatchewan. She was born and grew up in South Korea and has working experiences in diverse contexts. Before she joined the UofS, she received her Ph.D. in Second Language Education from the University of Toronto and worked as a Government of Canada Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of British Columbia. She has also taught at the University of Western Ontario and at the University of Hawaii at Manoa where she earned her Master’s degree in English as a Second Language, as well as in Korean secondary contexts. Through her professional trajectories that connect the Eastern, Western, and Prairie Canada both as an international student and as a university faculty member of immigrant origin, she has first-hand experience understanding how social differences often connect to social inequalities for linguistically and culturally diverse people. Her research addresses transnationalism and migration, language and educational policy, the effects of globalization on language, culture, and identity in the context of second language education to better support linguistically and culturally diverse students and their families.

Hyunjung Shin is passionate for researching and teaching about raising people’s awareness of this topic and making a more equitable, harmonious world together. In addition to her work in teacher education to support newcomer language education and multicultural communities in Saskatoon, she has been actively involved in a variety of service work related to newcomer/multicultural organizations and communities. She is currently co-chair of Local Immigration Partnership (LIP) Saskatoon’s Immigration Advisory Table (IAT), and served as a member-at-large for Saskatchewan Teachers of English as an Additional Language (SKTEAL) Board and as Director-at-large for Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan Board of Directors. Other areas of her social and community service include delivering a TEDx talk on transforming fear of diversity with compassion ( Her most recent passion is doing this work through compassion in leadership education through training in mindfulness and leadership. She loves walking in the nature, singing, k-pop dance, and growing a better person through daily mindfulness practices.

May 1, 2023 | Jerry Wang

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