The School Bus Symposium: A Poetic Journey of
Co-created Conference Space
Mitchell McLarnon1
McGill University
mitchell.mclarnon@mail.mcgill.ca
Pamela Richardson
Sean Wiebe
Royal Roads University
University of Prince Edward Island
pamela.1richardson@royalroads.ca
swiebe@upei.ca
Veena Balsawar
Marni Binder
University of Ottawa
Ryerson University
vbalsawer@gmail.com
mbinder@ryerson.ca
Kathy Browning
Diane Conrad
Laurentian University
University of Alberta
kbrowning@laurentian.ca
diane.conrad@ualberta.ca
Lynn Fels
Peter Gouzouasis
Simon Fraser University
Universtiy of British Columbia
lynn_fels@sfu.ca
peter.gouzouasis@ubc.ca
Anja Human
Eun-Ji Kim
North-West University
McGill University
20669003@nwu.ac.za
eun-ji.kim@mail.mcgill.ca
Carl Leggo
Amélie Lemieux
University of British Columbia
McGill University
carl.leggo@ubc.ca
amelie.lemieux@mail.mcgill.ca
Kathy Mantas
Karen Meyer
Nissiping University
University of British Columbia
kathym@nipissingu.ca
karen.meyer@ubc.ca
Silvia Morelli
Robert Nellis
Universidad Nacional de Rosario
Red Deer College
silviatmorelli@hotmail.com
robert.nellis@rdc.ab.ca
1 Biographical statement: The School Bus Symposium was initially imagined by Sean Wiebe and Pamela
Richardson while they were sitting on a school bus at a conference in 2012. In preparation for the 2015 IAACS
conference, they invited Diane Conrad, Lynn Fels, Mitchell McLarnon and Karen Meyer to co-facilitate it with them.
As a group, they decided to approach the session in a semi-structured manner where each would invite the bus riders
into a poetic exploration of their choice. Mitchell took the lead in organizing and advertising the session, as well as
compiling the submissions post-event. As all of the pieces in this article contribute to the finished whole, the
authorship is shared amongst all who contributed.
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Julie Vaudrin-Charette
University of Ottawa
jvaudrincharette@gmail.com
Abstract
With the intention of disrupting and re-imagining traditional conference spaces, this
article is a poetic compilation developed from a curriculum studies conference
symposium that took place on a school bus. During the School Bus Symposium, in situ
poetry writing and reading, song and storytelling occurred in response to open ended
prompts and facilitation of creative activities. After the symposium, a call was issued to
invite participants to submit any poetry or stories produced during, or inspired by the
session. Consisting of 18 submissions including poetry, story, photography and creative
essays, infused by curriculum theory and poetic inquiry, this collection offers an
inclusive, reflective, reflexive, participatory, and experiential rendering where
participants are living and journeying poetically. Emphasizing creative engagement with
personal memories and the surrounding environment from the moving school bus, the
authors collectively aimed to promote art education through imaginative approaches to
curriculum studies, poetic inquiry and academic conferences.
Keywords: curriculum studies; poetic inquiry; art education; participatory approaches;
conference symposiums.
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