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The System Almost H.A.D Me! cover

  • eBook Edition
    • 978-1-03-916737-7
    • epub, pdf files
  • Paperback Edition
    • 978-1-03-916735-3
    • 8.5 x 8.5 inches
    • Standard Color interior
    • 80 pages
  • Hardcover Edition
    • 978-1-03-916736-0
    • 8.5 x 8.5 inches
    • Standard Color interior
    • 80 pages
  • Keywords
    • Educational resources,
    • Long-form poetry,
    • Culturally Responsive Pedagogy,
    • Diversity and education,
    • Inclusive Education,
    • Student success,
    • Curriculum advancement

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The System Almost H.A.D Me!
Understanding Culturally Responsive Pedagogy - For Educators By An Educator
by Tanya Estwick

This unique essay in verse is a learning tool for educators who want to reconsider their cultural pedagogy. Using the author’s own experiences with a lack of diversity in the education system in Cape Breton as a framing narrative, the piece calls into question how educators respond to students from diverse backgrounds. Educators will: • Gain a better understanding of what it is to be responsive, both culturally and linguistically. • Learn the importance of building relationships with students, and how to create a school environment that is culturally responsive. • Reflect on the current pedagogical approach with an equitable lens. • See how being culturally and linguistically responsive in teaching increases student success. "The System Almost H.A.D. Me! Understanding Culturally Responsive Pedagogy…" includes an educational overview with twenty-two concrete tips for how to make your school environment culturally and linguistically responsive. It also shares resources for teachers and the bios of the contributors, including an experienced culturally responsive classroom teacher, a responsive illustrator, as well as the bio of the equitable community honoree. Culturally Responsive Pedagogy is a style of teaching, both in Canada and the United States, that promotes diverse, authentic learning environments for students and staff. It is, at its heart, grounded in equity. Educators, parents, and even students will learn to make connections to what it is to be culturally responsive in both teaching and learning. Partial proceeds from the sales of this book will go back to the community of Whitney Pier, and the students in the Cape Breton Centre for Education.

"So powerful!!!! Maya Angelou lives on! I loved the ABC LMNOP followed by ABC-123. Sometimes we need to re-educate education and that is what you did today! It was a privilege and something that will resonate with me for a lifetime!" —Ron Muller, Coordinator of Program Partnerships "There was so much power in your words and your experiences that it really left a lot of us speechless! You made a huge impact and you really spoke to our need to hear a multitude of voices and perspectives." —Janine MacAulay, Middle School Literacy Mentor "During these times a book of this nature is both important and relevant. All educators should have a copy of this on their desks." —Randolph King, School Counsellor "...Very powerful and moving! it is a wonderful reminder that every student's educational journey matters." —Daniel Beaton, School Principal “This book provides perspectives and strategies to enable teachers to connect learning to students' lived experiences. A reflective and relevant pedagogy is a key factor in closing the culturally responsive gaps that exist within our education system. It is a “must have” resource for modern educators." —Tara Barter, Classroom Teacher

Tanya Estwick photo

Tanya Estwick works as a consultant dealing with Equity and Race Relations, Cross-Cultural Understanding and Human Rights issues. For the first two decades of her career, she worked as a classroom teacher, teaching various subjects and grade levels while coordinating a Culture Academic Enrichment program for the Black Educators Association. For part of Tanya’s career, she worked in the psychology department of a federal institution, where she provided Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy to the general population and facilitated sexual offender programming and maintenance. During her time working in a Federal Institution, Tanya distributed, proctored, and signed exams in the school department of the prison as the G.E.D Examiner in the province of Alberta, Canada. Among various certifications, diplomas, and three degrees, Tanya holds a master’s degree in education. Tanya enjoys riding her street bike, gardening, cooking ethnic food, becoming grounded with nature, meditating, playing sports, venturing/travelling, swimming, singing, playing percussion, community empowerment, doodling art, spending time with loved ones, writing, and free rhyming. Tanya lives in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Cape Breton, Canada, and has one adult son. She keeps reptiles for pets, and her parakeet budgerigar “Charlie” is a bit of a “spoken word poet” himself, with always having plenty to say.


Tanya Estwick
Emily Lettice
Kerri Manuel

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