I enter the role of pedagogist with a background in Montessori education and a deep respect for the theories and knowledges that young children have about and with the world. Moreover, in my previous career as a journalist, I began to pay attention to how colonialism functions in what is now called Canada and how to learn to live as a settler on unceded territories. Thus, as a pedagogist, I am committed to putting childhood into conversation with the legacies and ongoing project of colonization in Canada.
One of the ways in which I strive to trouble these colonial discourses is by challenging the dominance of child development theories. For me, developmentalism limits what a child is and can be and prescribes how an educator should respond. By creating a “normal child” based on Euro-Western, early-20th- century, able-bodied and gendered values, developmental frameworks position anyone who does not fit the mold as lacking.
With this in mind, I am interested in working alongside educators, children and families to crack open our view of the young child and together reimagine what childhood might be in Kamloops. To do this, I am beginning to engage in curriculum making in local and situated ways in three childcare centres. We are grappling with questions like these: What is childhood in the 21st century in the unceded territories of the Tk’emlúps te Secwe̓pemc? What happens when we cannot rely on theories of child development when we are making curriculum? How might we story childhood otherwise?
Kamloops Child Care Resource and Referral, Secwepemcùlewc
Teresa aims to cultivate collaborative relationships with educators, families, children and my pedagogist colleagues, to think otherwise about children and childcare, and co-build a community where all children can flourish.