For me, the first step towards decolonizing my teaching practice was acknowledging my own role as a colonizer on indigenous land. At the beginning of the year, this was something that we hard for me to wrap my brain around. Through learning more about people who are indigenous to this land and still live in this area, I have been able to acknowledge the areas in which my own education failed me and my own biases still lay dormant.
Following this acknowledgement to myself, the next step was clearing acknowledging my own position as an educator. My learning about the practice of a land acknowledgement couldn’t have come in a timelier fashion. I feel that acknowledging the land on which we teach is a genuine way to begin discussing decolonizing my own teaching practice with my students and peers.
I have also greatly appreciated gaining indigenous knowledge and skills that I can then share with my students, while attributing the knowledge and skills to the people from whom I learned them. To me, it feels much more comfortable to share an indigenous skill, such as the practice of cooking with stinging nettle, when I can tell my students exactly where I learned it and who uses this practice today.