[De]Institutionalizing English (by Jennifer Burton)

Jennifer Burton pic.jpegWe have been anticipating the publication of this post for several weeks now. It is our first spoken word poem and it comes to you from Jennifer Burton, at University of Regina.  After completing her degree in Justice Studies, she decided to take one year out of her life to teach English as a Second Language in Seoul, South Korea.  Teaching in Korea soon became her life and one year quickly turned into five.  In 2010, she returned back “home” to Regina, Saskatchewan and continued teaching ESL at the University of Regina.  Currently, she is writing her MEd thesis where much of her work is informed by her experiences as a teacher and language learner, centering on some of the themes highlighted in the BILD blog.
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On (re)claiming my bilingualism (by Lauren Godfrey-Smith)

I’m writing this from my brother’s house in Melbourne, Australia, where outside the window in front of me are the same (or similar) Monet-esque winter skies, red 11421620_10153245919386355_1107122113_ntiled rooves, and native birdsongs that I remember from growing up in Tasmania. When I was a teenager, I left Canada and moved to Australia, and by the time I was in my early twenties, I had a stronger sense of Australian citizenship and identity than I’d ever had about being Canadian. Yet, my persistent Canadian accent and the almost daily question, “Where are you really from?” caused a kind of ‘identity dissonance’: In my heart, I was an Australian with a long family history and strong cultural heritage, but I was marked as a Canadian by the way that I spoke English.
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A weekend of not learning language (by Michaela Salmon)

Bike rackI drove down to New York City with four friends last weekend to bike the 5 Boro Bike Tour. When we crossed into the United States, the border official asked us where we were all from. Without hesitation we unanimously replied “Montreal”, but our origins are a bit more disparate than that. Packed tightly into my little blue sedan were: a West-Coast Canadian, a Franco-Ontarian, an Ohioan with a mixed-up-anything-but-Midwest accent, a Spaniard, and me, an Australian.New York Bike expo
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