Celebrating Linguistic Diversity Conference

Diverse Teaching Strategies for Diverse Learners

Chapter 2 of the book Educating Everybody’s Children, edited by Robert W. Cole, is a rich resource offering research based strategies to meet the needs of diverse students toward closing the achievement gap.  Teachers make a difference and strengthen their practices by understanding the context and needs of all their students and addressing those needs by incorporating these practices in their classrooms. Directly facing our personal stereotypes begins to allow us to change our thinking and see our students from a different light, one that values them and chooses to build on what they know and bring to the classroom.  The entire chapter is available for free here. While each focus is important, my favorite strategies are 2.5, 2.6, 2.10 and 2.17. What are your favorites?

Tribute Video and Words

The two clips below are a testimony of how Dr. Jim Cummins has inspired the work of many educators and researchers worldwide as can  be seen in the many and varied forms they have chosen to express their appreciation for him as a scholar and as the remarkable and extremely approachable human being he is. To put it in Dr. Cummins’ words, the Tribute Slideshow contains traditional text words sent by many of his students and colleagues; whereas, the Tribute Video engages in a multimodal and multilingual collage of clips, slides, and even music created all by Dr. Cummins’ friends. Therefore, as per Cummins’ Transformative Multiliteracies framework, both clips complement each other. Thus, we encourage you to watch both clips, get inspired, and take Dr. Cummins’ work to the next level in contributing to critically examine and transform education wherever you are visiting us from!

Tribute Slideshow

Tribute Video

Celebrating Linguistic Diversity Conference April 30-May 2, 2014

Updated versions of the conference program, abstracts and information page are now available on our CLD page.

Celebrating Linguistic Diversity Conference

Celebrating Linguistic Diversity 2014
Call for Tribute to Jim Cummins
A Digital Video Tribute to Dr. Jim Cummins


The 2014 Celebrating Linguistic Diversity conference will honour the many contributions of Dr. Jim Cummins to the field of language learning and teaching.  On the occasion of his retirement from OISE/UT, the conference organizers are preparing a digital video tribute to Dr. Cummins, which will be featured at the conference.

We invite contributors (students, colleagues, collaborators) to participate in creating the video tribute to Dr. Cummins’ life and work by submitting the following:

  1. Personal narratives and joyful stories about working with Dr. Cummins
  2. Accounts of Dr. Cummins’ scholarly contributions
  3. Artifacts relating to Dr. Cummins’ work
  4. Artistic representations (music, visual art, etc…)

These contributions should be submitted as short digital video clips (1-2 minutes in length) or digital images/photographs.  The contributions should explicitly state your name and institutional affiliation, and the year(s) in which you worked with Dr. Cummins.

Please submit contributions by email attachment to:  Cumminstribute@gmail.com.

Please direct any questions or comments to:

Dr. Antoinette Gagne, OISE, University of Toronto: antoinette.gagne@gmail.com
Dr. Saskia Stille, University of Toronto: saskia.stille@utoronto.ca


Call for Identity Text Exhibition

Building on the success and interest in our first exhibition, we are pleased to announce the

2nd Imaginings Exhibition: Showcasing teacher-student “Identity Text” creations

The exhibition will be hosted at the Celebrating Linguistic Diversity (CLD) Conference (April 30-May 2). This year, the conference will honour the contributions of Dr. Jim Cummins on the occasion of his retirement from OISE/University of Toronto. Dr. Cummins will continue his work in the field as Professor Emeritus.

The purpose of the exhibition is to showcase creative projects in which teachers have worked collaboratively with students to create Identity Texts (Cummins & Early, 2011). The exhibition will illustrate how teachers have engaged students in creating artifacts that draw upon their cultural and linguistic resources, diverse histories, and multiple modes of representation in classroom-based learning, contributing to the formation of students’ identities as talented, capable, and legitimate producers of knowledge at school.

The exhibition will be held during a conference session on Friday, May 2, from 10:45- 12:15 pm. Like the first exhibition, it will be located in a large classroom at OISE, which can accommodate approximately 20 exhibits. Exhibits can include posters, books, digital videos, images, visual art, and other artifacts of student work. The session will begin with a 45-minute panel presentation and discussion, chaired by Dr. Margaret Early from the University of British Columbia. Following the panel discussion, there will be a 45-minute gallery walk, during which time exhibitors are invited to talk and share their work with colleagues.

This exhibition is a school-university collaboration, coordinated by Sharon Newmaster, ESL/ELD Consultant (WRDSB), and Saskia Stille (UToronto) and Gail Prasad (OISE/UT). We hope to have a broad representation of work from across the province of Ontario, and as such would like to invite you and/or your teachers to make a submission to the exhibition. Please share this letter of invitation and the submission form with those interested in participating. Please use the following link to submit your proposal  http://goo.gl/ndtx5S (Identity Text Submission form). All submissions are due by Monday, March 3rd, 2014.

We hope you will join us in celebrating, with your students, Dr. Cummins’ contributions to and advocacy for language education in Ontario, and around the world.

If you have any questions, please contact us by phone or by email:

Sharon Newmaster, sharon_newmaster@wrdsb.on.ca; Saskia Stille, saskia.stille@utoronto.ca; Gail Prasad, gail.prasad@utoronto.ca 519.579.0003 x4466     416.706.1596