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Designing Critical and Creative Learning with Indigenous Youth

A Personal Journey

2016 - 238 pages

Donna DeGennaro (Founder and Director of Unlocking Silent Histories, Austin, Texas, USA)

ISBN Paperback: 9789463003056 ($ 54.00)
ISBN Hardcover: 9789463003063 ($ 99.00)
ISBN E-Book: 9789463003070

Subject: Education General, Youth, Art Education, Culture

Number 51 of the series: Bold Visions in Educational Research

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Designing Critical and Creative Learning with Indigenous Youth

Designing Critical and Creative Learning with Indigenous Youth: A Personal Journey traces the events leading to the creation of Unlocking Silent Histories (USH) and outlines the program’s foundational and methodological principles. 

The book opens with an explanation of the author’s struggles with the theory-practice tension, a conflict that has inhibited the widespread adoption and actualization of socially just learning engagements. She then offers her rationale for taking a leave from academia to concentrate fully on developing a critical pedagogy-informed learning design facilitated by combining community-connected inquiry with video ethnography.

The substance of the text focuses on the identified foundational and methodological principles, explained through first-hand accounts of USH’s year-one participants.  These youth-centered chapters assist in presenting an argument for employing culturally responsive and socially just educational engagements.  At the same time, the chapters illustrate how drawing on youth voice can more broadly contribute to bridging theory and practice in communities that are often disconnected from the larger educational discourse.

The author does not intend to provide a scripted implementation process within USH or of educational in general.  Rather she uses first-hand youth accounts in this cultural context to give the reader a lived experience of how a youth-directed, emergent learning path materializes when employing a model that draws on local knowledge and invite youth voice.

USH, an educational non-profit organization created to amplify the voices and identities of indigenous youth through the art of documentary film making, employs an innovative pedagogy that draws upon native knowledge, culture, and voice to create a locally-informed learning design.  

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Designing Critical and Creative Learning with Indigenous Youth