Holistic Educators Saturday Meetings at OISE in Toronto 2017-2018

The Holistic Educator’s Group meets Saturday mornings from 10am - 12 noon approximately every two months from September through April. The meetings are open to all who may be interested in holistic teaching and learning and are not exclusively for those who are associated with studies at OISE/UT. We have a number of captivating workshop leaders each year who join us to lead the sessions which tend to be interactive and participatory. Meetings also provide an opportunity to network with those who have common interests. There is no need to register in advance and there is no charge to attend the workshops. Please invite others who may be interested in our meetings.

Our meetings are at OISE/UT, 252 Bloor Street West between St. George Street and Bedford Road on the north side of the street. The room number for the meeting is posted  at the security desk in the lobby. The main floor coffee concession is sometimes open on Saturdays or there's a Tim Horton's just east of the building on Bloor.  Parking on Saturday under the OISE building is fairly reasonable. There is a Green P parking lot on Bedford just north of Bloor. Of course TTC is always a good option (St. George Station on the Bloor/Danforth line).

Special Announcement:  Holistic Educator Conference September 2017  https://inside.sou.edu/education/holistic/index.html

Holistic Educator Workshop Presenters at OISE for 2017-2018:

October 21 - Sean Park Room 5-280
Prototyping the future of holistic education: A design workshop
How might we co-create the future of holistic education?  What radical experiments must we run to keep spirit and mystery alive in our teaching and learning?  This highly interactive workshop draws from design thinking and expressive arts as scaffolds to help us creatively and performatively cook up new ways of being and doing our work.  We will go through an iteration of a creative design process which includes dis/un/re/covering inner resources, reframing our challenges, ideating wild possibilities, and crafting embodied expressions (prototypes) of the more expansive, sacred contexts we seek as educators. Participants are strongly encouraged to bring a burning question they’re wrestling with.

Sean Park is an educator, facilitator, coach, and scholar. He holds a PhD in contemplative and arts education from Simon Fraser University having studied with Heesoon Bai, Avraham Cohen and Celeste Snowber.  Sean has training in Theravadan Buddhism, Daoist martial arts, theatre work, Afro-Brazilian percussion, counselling, and solution-focused coaching.  He is presently a student of Dr. Bradford Keeney and Dr. Hillary Keeney in ecstatic healing.

He once served as a faculty member in the Interdisciplinary Expressive Arts (IDEA) program at Kwantlen Polytechnic University and recently lead the Studio Y fellowship for youth at MaRS in Toronto. He currently teaches design thinking and creativity at McMaster University and freelances as a writer and creative life coach.

Sean lives with his wife Stephanie and son Theo in West Hamilton.  You can sometimes find him freestyle rapping with kids at the Ryerson HAAA park. He is also becoming an expert at writing his bios in the third person.

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November 18 - Lynda DelGrande  Room 5-280
Caring Clown: The Humour Solution
Working in long-term care homes, Caring Clowns create a holistic and joyful environment to help stimulate the well being of residents, especially those with dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. This playful session will introduce participants to basic clowning skills and how they are applied in a health care setting.  Residents, staff and the clowns themselves reap the benefits.  Experience first hand the fun behind the red nose. Participants will be able to share their personal experiences and ways of adapting the skills to suit their unique situations.

Lynda Del Grande is a retired high school teacher who found a new passion in becoming a Caring Clown. Since 2008, she has taught Caring Clown at Ryerson’s Program for Adults 50+. Clowns thrive on surprise, and true to form, Lynda was overwhelmingly surprised how Caring Clown ‘found’ her. Now entering it’s ninth year, Caring Clown graduates volunteer at long-term care homes across the city of Toronto.

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January 13 - Dr. Larry Nusbaum Room 2-279
The Power of Self Care

In an airplane emergency, we are told: “take the oxygen first before assisting others”. On the ground, regardless of how we spend our time, it can be very difficult to balance the care of ourselves with the care of others. Together we will explore questions about this important topic. In this experiential session, I will offer a process to help access the often hidden intuitive wisdom rooted in our own experiences. This can help us take better care of ourselves and those around us.

Larry Nusbaum is a physician, psychotherapist, storyteller, and musician. He designs Inner Guidance tools that help people access the healing power of their intuition, imagination, and hope. He is committed to promoting a culture of self care as a foundation for the care of others, and has been teaching his methods in the fields of education and health care for over 25 years.

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February 10 - Jack Miller Room 2-279
Love and Compassion:  Exploring their Role in Education by Jack Miller

Book Launch:   This book explores different forms of love- self-love, love of others, impartial love or compassion, love of learning, love of beauty, nonviolent action, presence and universal or cosmic love.  These different forms will be discussed in the workshop in relation to teaching and learning. The book will be available for special workshop price of $20.00. For details see the flyer Miller.LoveandCompassion.pdf

John (Jack) Miller has been working in the field of holistic education for over 40 years.  He is author/editor of 20 books on holistic learning and contemplative practices in education which include Whole Child Education, The Holistic Curriculum, The Contemplative Practitioner, and most recently Holistic Education and Embodied Learning. His writing has been translated into nine languages. Jack has worked extensively with holistic educators in Japan, Korea and Hong Kong for the past 20 years.  Jack teaches courses on holistic education and contemplative education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto where he is Professor. http://www.oise.utoronto.ca/ctl/Faculty_Profiles/1265/John_Miller.html

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March 24 - Benjamin Hicks & Misha Arbarbanel  Room 5-280

WHAT HAPPENS IN THE IN-BETWEEN? Exploring the potential of Contemplative Arts Based Data Analysis

This workshop will explore the development of a unique approach to qualitative research that combines visual arts-based data analysis and contemplative practice. Contemplative Arts Based Data Analysis (CABDA) recognizes the particularly complicated ways that data collection, data analysis and data representation can interact for qualitative researchers whose subject matter overlaps with their personal life experiences. It offers one possibility for remaining more present and connected with the people, processes and potential of our academic work. The visual component of this workshop will help to demonstrate how CABDA has functioned in practice for me as a teacher/researcher whose transgender identity intersects with the queering-spaces work that I do with educators. Examples from my MA thesis project will demonstrate how I use a cyclical process of drawing, painting and reflective writing combined with compassion meditation (Tonglen) to trouble my own academic analysis. During the workshop, there will also be opportunities for group participation in various aspects of these processes. My visual examples include multi-media inquiry questions as well as the graphic stories that develop alongside my academic writing. These visual translations correspond to my written analysis, but they also honour the ways in which research is emotional, that emotion involves memory, and that memory always impacts our present perceptions as researchers.

benjamin lee hicks is a visual artist, elementary school teacher and PhD candidate in Curriculum Studies and Teacher Development at OISE/University of Toronto. benjamin’s current research considers the way that teachers feel about “not-knowing”. They are interested in how uncertainty affects the willingness of teachers to act publically on their felt-desire to support trans/gender diverse youth in schools, and the potential of holistic professional development to help teachers shift their own relationship to fear/inaction.

Poetry and therapeutic writing
This short workshop will involve looking at and practicing therapeutic writing, especially using forms of poetry. Most students who struggle in school, and even ones who don’t seem to struggle, do so because of emotional factors. Working with students to help them get underneath their own feelings can help them un-block their education, whether those blocks manifest as apathy, anger, substance abuse, lack of confidence, some combination, or something else entirely. This workshop will borrow from the realms of counselling and psychotherapy, hopefully presenting some useful frameworks and tools for helping students cultivate more emotional literacy.
Participants will be invited to explore themselves through writing activities, and discuss the therapeutic value of each form.

Misha Abarbanel is a high school teacher in the Toronto District School Board, served for years as an English and Literacy Curriculum Leader, and is currently completing his PhD in Curriculum Studies and Teacher Development at OISE/UT. Misha writes on education and politics for the Huffington Post and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, and volunteered for many years on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Student Debating Union.

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To receive e-mail notices of workshops please contact Cheryl Clarke - cherylj.clarke@utoronto.ca

Workshops: 2008-09 2009-10 20010-11 2011-12 2012-13  2013-14  2014-15  2015-16  2016-17

your host - Dr. Selia Karsten
January 2018