Stories are powerful. They shape the way we think about the world, ourselves and each other. The stories we choose to present to students at school, as teachers and librarians, profoundly affect how students perceive the world and their place in it. We want to help you choose culturally diverse resources that reflect students’ diverse lives, promote inclusion, challenge stereotypes, confront racism and ultimately strengthen our multicultural society.

Remy Lai

Remy Lai writes and draws stories for kids. She is the author and illustrator of Pie in the Sky and Fly on the Wall (Macmillan US and Walker Books Australia), both of which are graphic novel/prose hybrid books. Her middle years graphic novel Pawcasso will be published in 2021 (Macmillan US). Remy studied fine arts, with a major in painting and drawing.

Many of the characters in Lai’s books grapple with the dislocation of moving to a new country, learning a new language and trying to make sense of it all.

Remy was born in Indonesia, grew up in Singapore, and currently lives in Brisbane, Australia, where she can often be found exploring the woods with her dogs.

https://remylai.com/index.html

Solli Raphael

At 12 years of age, Solli Raphael was titled the youngest ever winner of the Australian Poetry Slam held at the Sydney Opera House after he performed ‘Australian Air’ – a poem about political wisdom, environmental awareness and the importance of social consciousness. He then rose to fame after his winning performance was viewed online over four million times in 24 hours. Now 15, Solli is a globally renowned poet and keynote speaker; having led workshops; performed and spoken at conferences, schools and universities. Additionally (and passionately), Solli is an environmental activist and humanitarian who works closely as an ambassador for four charities and organisations.

Solli’s first book Limelight, was published in 2018 and has received accolades for its capacity to engage students in poetry, having also won a Nautilus Book Award in 2019 for best middle-grade nonfiction. Solli’s second book, Spotlight, will be released in September 2020.

https://solliraphael.com.au/

Cath Moore

Cath Moore is of Irish/Afro-Caribbean heritage. She was born in Guyana, raised in Australia and has lived in Scotland and Belgium. She now lives in Melbourne. Cath is an award-winning screenwriter, a teacher and a filmmaker. Metal Fish, Falling Snow is her first novel.

https://www.cathmoorewrites.org/

The panel was moderated by Lenny Robinson from The Stella Prize.

 

Upcoming professional learning:

Culturally Diverse Literature Professional Learning Series: Part 2 –  Choosing culturally diverse literature

Culturally Diverse Literature Professional Learning Series: Part 3 – Making changes at my school or institution


You may also be interested in the following events:


Powering Learning: Supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives – ONLINE

A joint event:

  • School Library Association of Victoria (SLAV)
  • Language and Multicultural Education Resource Centre (LMERC)

Friday 13th November 9.30am to 12.30pm

https://slav.wildapricot.org/event-3871570

This event is currently being changed to an online format so the current format may change slightly.

Download (PDF, Unknown)


Readers, Stories, Literacy A forum for learning and discussion

4pm for 4.15 start to 6.00pm 29th October – Book Talking

https://slav.wildapricot.org/event-3696722?CalendarViewType=0&SelectedDate=9/10/2020

Download (PDF, Unknown)


Picture Book Showcase – ONLINE

October 8 2020 4.00pm to 5.30pm 

https://slav.wildapricot.org/event-3934920

Download (PDF, Unknown)


This series of professional learning events is a result of collaboration between staff from the Languages and Multicultural Education Resource Centre (LMERC), the School Libraries Association of Victoria (SLAV), Stella Schools, and VicTESOL.


About the Organisers

The School Library Association of Victoria (SLAV) offers dynamic and inspiring opportunities for teacher-librarians and library teams to build their essential role in engaging and developing lifelong learners.  Through leadership, advocacy and collegiality and an extensive professional learning and publications program.

www.slav.org.au

Stella is an organisation that champions cultural change through recognising, elevating and celebrating Australian women’s writing.  It includes the annual Stella Prize award for women’s writing, the Stella Count, which examines gender bias in book reviewing and Stella Schools, which develops programs that seek to inspire and empower young people to find their own creative voices, challenge stereotypes and imagine a future not limited by their gender.

https://thestellaprize.com.au/

The Languages & Multicultural Education Resource Centre (LMERC) is for educators across all sectors K-12. LMERC provides resources in the areas of English as an Additional Language (EAL), Languages other than English, the Intercultural Capability and the cross curriculum priorities areas of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures, Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia, and Sustainability. The library holds an extensive collection of over 25,000 resources in all formats for educators across all sectors and at all levels, early childhood to adult. Library membership is available free to teachers from these educational settings: early childhood centres (in receipt of government funding), schools F-12 across all sectors, pre-service teachers and lecturers (in the areas of EAL and languages), homework clubs and community language schools. Home school parents, teachers of adults and community workers in education roles are also welcome to join.

https://lmerc.softlinkhosting.com.au/oliver/home/news

                                       

Part 2 – Choosing Culturally Diverse Literature Resource auditing and recommendation session with LMERC and SLAV librarians

Tuesday 15 September, 4:00 – 5:00 pm (Online Event)

In part 2, we discussed possible ways to audit your current text lists or collections, and give resource recommendations for you to consider introducing at your school or institution.

Jennifer Peck took participants through the resources available through LMERC, including lists of culturally diverse texts.

Stella Schools Manager Lenny Robinson introduced the audience to two resources developed by Stella Schools to support diversity in text selection: The Read Up Reading Guide, developed in partnership with the Victorian Government, and the Stella Sparks Reading Guide, one of several resources included in their Resource Kit for Stella Sparks schools program.

We then split into groups facilitated by SLAV and LMERC librarians who took participants through some resource recommendations. This part of the session was not recorded.

Jennifer Peck’s presentation 

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For information on Stella resources, go to their website – https://thestellaprize.com.au/

Breakout Room Presentation Resources

6-12 year old readers– Raff Grasso

https://bit.ly/2RrMd6y

https://padlet.com/grassr/2qvzrijrajxkn8nm

13-14 year old readers – Hope Do

https://www.canva.com/design/DAEFMVNyg28/N3MUn1V6pdUPO6WQ10zpeg/view?utm_content=DAEFMVNyg28&utm_campaign=designshare&utm_medium=link&utm_source=publishsharelink

15-18 year old readers – Erin Wamala

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LMERC text lists

Culturally diverse fiction K-12 list   https://tinyurl.com/y56vrrhv

Culturally diverse fiction -adults (EAL) https://tinyurl.com/y5nkleab

LMERC Suppliers list (Languages, EAL, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives and culturally diverse fiction) https://tinyurl.com/yy2hbepa

Pre-reading

Prior to the session, participants were asked to read the following article – ‘Assessing and selecting culturally diverse literature for the classroom’ by Helen Adam and Laurie Harper (2016) prior to attending the professional learning event: Culturally Diverse Literature Professional Learning Series – Part 2: Choosing culturally diverse literature (Tuesday 15th September 4:00-5:00pm AEST).  

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Reference: Adam, H., & Harper, L. (2016). Assessing and selecting culturally diverse literature for the classroom. Retrieved from https://ro.ecu.edu.au/ecuworkspost2013/1892

Upcoming professional learning events:

 

Culturally Diverse Literature Professional Learning Series: Part 3 – Making changes at my school or institution

Online discussion rooms – Wednesday 7 October, 4:00-5:00pm

Free


You may also be interested in the following events:


Powering Learning: Supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives – ONLINE

A joint event:

  • School Library Association of Victoria (SLAV)
  • Language and Multicultural Education Resource Centre (LMERC)

Friday 13th November 9.30am to 12.30pm

https://slav.wildapricot.org/event-3871570

This event is currently being changed to an online format so the current format may change slightly.

Download (PDF, Unknown)

Readers, Stories, Literacy A forum for learning and discussion – ONLINE

4pm for 4.15 start to 6.00pm 29th October – Book Talking

https://slav.wildapricot.org/event-3696722?CalendarViewType=0&SelectedDate=9/10/2020

Download (PDF, Unknown)

Picture Book Showcase – ONLINE

October 8 2020 4.00pm to 5.30pm 

https://slav.wildapricot.org/event-3934920

Download (PDF, Unknown)

Dr Sue Ollerhead, Macquarie University

Wednesday 5 August 2020, 4:00-5:00pm

Online Webinar

In this workshop, Sue discussed the important role that students’ home languages play in their classroom learning. She explored the rationale for using translanguaging as a pedagogical approach and present some key classroom translanguaging strategies used by teachers to create more inclusive and engaging learning experiences for multilingual learners.

The session was aimed mostly at upper primary and secondary teachers, but the principles can be applied in wide range of contexts.

Dr Sue Ollerhead is a lecturer in Languages Education at the School of Education at Macquarie University. She has worked extensively as a teacher, teacher trainer and researcher in South Africa, Egypt, the United Kingdom, India and Australia. Her current research focuses on translanguaging pedagogies in culturally and linguistically diverse classrooms. Sue is co-editor of the book Plurilingualism in Teaching and Learning: Complexities across Contexts (2018) and the special issue of the Australian Journal of Applied Linguistics: Translanguaging as a resource in teaching and learning (2020).

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Julia Lippold, Lauriston Girls School

Thursday 30 July, 3:45-5:15 pm

Online webinar

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Thank you for attending this event.  Please complete the evaluation survey. This will help VicTESOL to ensure that the professional learning we offer is relevant and useful, and help us provide feedback to the presenter. The survey takes about 2-5 minutes to complete. Thank you.

 

Skye Playsted

Thursday 14 May 2020

When we think of the term ‘culture’, it can be easy to focus on concrete elements such as art, music, clothing or food. However, these visible aspects are only the tip of the cultural iceberg (Ting-Toomey & Chung, 2011). Deeper cultural assumptions are hidden from view and are not as easy to identify. These can include our beliefs about learning and teaching, expectations of politeness, values, social norms or unspoken conversational ‘taboos’. Misunderstandings can easily occur across cultures in these areas. A deeper understanding of the ways in which culture and language influence our views of the world and how we communicate is needed (DeCapua & Wintergerst, 2016). Drawing on DeCapua’s (2018) Culture Myths: Applying Second Language Research to Classroom Teaching, this session offered teachers an opportunity to consider and ‘unpack’ some commonly held ‘myths’ about culture which affect learning and teaching in the adult EAL classroom.

Skye Playsted is an educator with over 20 years of teaching experience as a second language and music teacher in Australian schools. She has taught English to adult students as a volunteer in community refugee support groups, and has been teaching in vocational colleges and university academic English programs in the Refugee Welcome Zone of Toowoomba, Queensland. Skye completed her M Ed (TESOL) via distance through the University of Wollongong, NSW, and has recently moved to Brisbane with her family. She has been awarded a PhD scholarship through the Australian government research training program, to research reflective practice, teacher cognition and oral communication pedagogy in beginner adult English language teaching.

 

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Session summary by David Kezilas (VicTESOL Professional Learning Coordinator):

Structured around Andrea DeCapua’s ‘Culture Myths: Applying Second Language Research in Classroom Teaching’, Skye set about explaining a lot of the myths and misunderstandings which can commonly occur in cross-cultural communication.

Thoroughly researched and drawing on a wide variety of sources, the presentation covered many helpful concepts including big ‘C’ and little ‘C’ culture, the cultural iceberg, cultural lenses, high and low context communication, and collectivism vs individualism.

We thank Skye for all her work and for volunteering her time to present. We also thank participants for attending and sharing their reflections and questions on intercultural communication throughout the session.

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Listening skills are ones we all employ, both passively and actively, but how do we teach and evaluate them as part of VCE EAL assessment?

In this session you will consider how to develop and embed valid EAL listening assessment into every outcome of Units 1-4 through the completion and analysis of an existing assessment tool and subsequent creation of a task based on evidence-based listening assessment practices.

As a passionate EAL, Spanish and 7-12 English teacher as well as an active VicTESOL committee member and second language learner, April is highly experienced in the areas of first and additional languages education. She completed her Masters thesis on VCE listening task assessment at the University of Melbourne and is currently training undergraduate and post graduate teachers at La Trobe University in literacy, secondary EAL pedagogy and curriculum and interdisciplinary education. She recently developed materials for the DET Koorie Outcomes Unit to promote the use of EAL teaching practices for improved social and academic outcomes for Victoria’s Indigenous students.

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Wednesday 4 March

Functional Multilingualism/Translanguaging are currently popular terms being researched, discussed and adapted to diverse learning settings. This webinar was a practical response to the current interest in Translanguaging, suggesting ways this might look in EALD classrooms and what teachers might consider when developing Translanguaging activities. With the intention of bringing students’ linguistic and cultural knowledge to the fore through redesigning Australian Curriculum and SACE task, four tasks, along with samples of student work, were presented and discussed.

Janet Armitage currently works for the South Australian Department for Education in the role of EAL/D Hub Coach supporting teachers in professional development that recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander EALD learners. Janet undertook action research in a large secondary school in South Australia where she was an EALD teacher and EALD & Languages Coordinator. She is also a PhD candidate in Applied Linguistics with the University of South Australia and has been part of a team providing professional development to Languages teachers across the state.

Glynis Rose & Rosemary McLoughlin Tuesday 11 February, 4-5:30 pm, Online event In this session, Glynis and Rosemary provided feedback on student performance in the 2019 VCE EAL exam, including analysis of student performance in each section and examples of student responses. There were opportunities for participants to ask questions and gain valuable insight into…

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11 February 2019

Glynis Rose is chief assessor of the VCE EAL exam. In this presentation she gives her reflections on the 2018 EAL exam and offers strategies for teaching students the skills needed in the exam.