Conference Discussion Protocol


Below is a suggested structure for your discussion--feel free to draw upon it as heavily or as loosely as you wish. In addition, your group has a Jamboard that you can use to capture your thinking. We'll  provide a link to your group Jamboard in the chat box shortly after you enter your breakout group.



Discuss the content of the readings: share what you read with the group (particularly as many will have read a different article), using the quote and questions you recorded as a point of entry. Capture these quotes and questions on your Jamboard, responding to one another’s ideas either in a sticky note or verbally.


Suggested Discussion Questions:

  1. How confident do we feel about the anti-racist teaching we’re already doing? What are some of our strengths? What are some of our weaknesses? What more do we need to know or learn about to feel prepared for this work?
  2. How do the articles affect the way we think about/assess/evaluate students' English? In response to our reading, what tweaks or alterations would we consider making to the anti-racist practice we’re already implementing? What challenges do we anticipate? What materials, information, or support might we need to take on those challenges?
  3. How do our respective student populations affect the ways in which we take on this work?
  4. How much liberty do we have in our respective workplaces to address racism in the classroom? Does course content or UConn designation impact our decisions to foreground race? How might our engagement with students as college students through these UConn courses enable or support our efforts to enact critical discourse?
  5. What resistance or uncertainty, if any, do we have to the prioritization of anti-racist teaching here and elsewhere?


PART III: 12:30-12:45
Use your Jamboard to capture some takeaways, key words, and abiding questions from today’s conference. What themes or concepts will stay with us? What questions or concerns do we still have?



  • Consider the ways some of these readings challenge notions of traditional academic writing. What might adopting a more capacious notion of writing look like at your schools, and how might it aid anti-racist pedagogy? What obstacles might you run into? How do we replace “standards?
  • Share an idea today’s program sparked that you hope to implement in your classroom. How does it connect to the readings or presentations? What changes will you make to implement it?
  • Write a reflection that captures some of your thinking in response to today’s program. Include insights, inspiration, and anxieties. Take turns sharing some of your thoughts or capture them on your Jamboard.
protest image by Isaiah Rustad (Unsplash)

[W]e have to rid ourselves of what Cook (1999) called the comparative fallacy. The haste to judge language performance using limited and unfair norms has affected much of what we have done so far in language learning.  

                                                -Suresh Canagarajah