BCTF Workshops

Professional and Social Issues Workshops Program


The BCTF has a proud history of supporting members and locals with workshops and training. Workshops are led by classroom teachers (facilitators) with special expertise and training.

Workshops are available for school staffs, districts, locals, parent groups, and conferences/PD days.

Special requests: Sometimes schools, locals, or regions need a workshop or study session that is not covered by our current list of workshops. BCTF facilitators are often able to adapt and extend services to meet these needs.

Further, locals and/or schools that are geographically adjacent may wish to co-sponsor BCTF workshops together. Jenny Garrels, the workshop co-ordinator, will work with locals and schools in the organization and logistics of co-sponsored workshops. Sessions meeting BCTF workshop criteria and budget guidelines will be fully funded by the BCTF. Cost-sharing with school districts and agencies is also negotiable.

If you have an idea, special circumstance, or request, please contact Jenny Garrels at 604-871-1871, or 1-800-663-9163, local 1871, or jgarrels@bctf.ca.

Examples of special request workshops

  • classroom demonstrations 
  • onsite school district and local training to build local capacity 
  • presentations to parent advisory councils 
  • introduction to regional teacher inquiry or action research groups, examining teaching practice, and curriculum questions 
  • social justice associates, linking with community coalitions to sponsor regional/local social issues events.

Booking criteria for workshops

  • booked through the Professional and Social Issues Division 
  • facilitated by BCTF facilitators who are classroom teachers 
  • require at least three weeks’ advance notice 
  • for groups of 15 to 30 (special circumstances and small schools exempted) 
  • for intact teacher groups, school staffs, etc.

Preference is given to workshops that are three to five hours in length. Some workshops cannot be presented in less than five hours.

Workshops require no honorarium as the BCTF covers the costs for the facilitator. The organizing local or school is responsible for facilities and supplies.  

Criteria for PD days or conferences

  • no more than five BCTF-led workshops may be presented on a PD day 
  • preregistration is preferred, with cancellation two weeks in advance if the workshop is undersubscribed 
  • minimum length of the workshops is two to three hours each 
  • a few workshops are five hours in length.

Booking a workshop 

All PSI workshops must be booked through the BCTF Professional and Social Issues Division (PSID) and must be made at least three weeks prior to the date of training. Contact the BCTF Professional and Social Issues Department (PSID), Kelsey Dunn at 604-871-1857 or 1-800-663-9163, local 1857, to book Professional and Social Issues (PSI) workshops.

Give at least three weeks’ notice so that PSI facilitators, who are teachers or local officers with busy schedules, have adequate time to prepare materials and arrange travel. 

Workshop Request Online Submission
To book a workshop, use the “Book this workshop” link below the selected workshop description. Select “Professional and Social Issues” from the program type list and click “Go.” Fill in the form and submit. Upon submission, your workshop request will be sent to the BCTF and you will receive an email confirmation of its receipt. 

A detailed, confirmation email will be sent to you when a facilitator has been arranged.


Aboriginal Education

BC Blanket Exercise: Exploring Historical Relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Peoples 

(2–3 hours)

This experiential workshop will help participants understand how colonization of the land we now know as British Columbia and Canada has impacted the people who lived here long before settlers arrived. Through this exercise participants will explore the nation-to-nation relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada, how this relationship has been damaged over the years, and how we can work toward reconciliation.

Deconstructing Myths

(3 hours)

In this workshop participants are submerged into the depths of the mistruths that have made up the belief systems of mainstream Canada for far too long. Participants will be challenged to dig deeper through research, which must include historical documentation and oral testimony as opposed to acceptance of archaic misinformation and hidden fabricated narratives. In a commitment to the continuation of the work that teachers started with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, BCTF invites all teachers to join in the effort to seek truth through the deconstruction of myths in curriculum.

Employment Equity for Aboriginal Teachers Action Plan

Five hours

The Employment Equity for Aboriginal Teachers Action Plan workshop is a follow-up to the Introduction to Employment Equity for Aboriginal Teachers workshop. Participants will learn about facilitating discussion and problem-solving on the issues, and building an understanding of employment equity for Aboriginal teachers. This workshop provides locals with the tools to create an action plan.

Gladys We Never Knew Cross Curricular Lesson Modules for Secondary Schools

3 hours

Gladys Chapman, a student at the Kamloops Indian Residential School, died of tuberculosis at the age of 12. The spirit of Gladys is at the heart of this workshop that provides a cross-curricular module of lessons for teachers who want more ideas to help meet the ministry mandate of infusing Aboriginal content and perspectives at the secondary level. Like the intermediate module, participants will have the opportunity to engage with the activities and speak with the module developers. The goal of the session is to provide teachers with the resources, background, and support that will prepare them to take their students to a deeper level of truth and reconciliation education. This is a developing e-book resource.  

Gladys: The Life of a Child in a BC Residential School
The short life and tragic death of a BC residential school student
An elementary and middle school teaching resource

(3 hours)

Somebody’s sister … somebody’s auntie … somebody’s daughter …

Designed for the intermediate grades, this teacher and student-friendly, ten-lesson module was written with the New BC Curriculum in mind. While learning about the true-life story of Gladys, a local Aboriginal girl from the Nlaka’pamux Nation in Spuzzum, BC, students are taken on a local, land and place-based journey of inquiry and ethical judgement. Students are encouraged to connect personally to Gladys as they work together to examine and evaluate a wide range of primary and secondary resources. The goal of this session is to provide teachers with the resources, background and support that will prepare them to take their students to a deeper level of truth and reconciliation education.

Infusing Aboriginal Content (K-9)

(3 hours) 

While teachers express interest in incorporating more Aboriginal content in their classrooms, they are sometimes unsure of where to start and how to find authentic materials. This workshop is designed to create awareness around integrating Aboriginal perspectives and quality Aboriginal resources in the classroom through hands on activities.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Introduction to Employment Equity for Aboriginal Teachers

(3 hours) 

The letter of understanding between the BCTF and the BC Public School Employers' Association was signed over 10 years ago yet Aboriginal teachers remain vastly under-represented in our public schools. We must redress this under-representation through well-established proactive employment practices. This new workshop will revisit the challenges we must confront to address equity for Aboriginal teachers.

Project of Heart

(3 hours)

Project of Heart is an inquiry-based, hands-on, collaborative, intergenerational, artistic journey for seeking truth about the history of Aboriginal people in Canada. This teaching resource examines the history and legacy of Indian residential schools, commemorates the lives of the thousands of Indigenous children who died as a result, and prepares students to engage in social justice activities that contribute to the developing truth and reconciliation movement.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Sixties Scoop

(3 hours)
This workshop invites educators to open their hearts and minds to understanding the colonial impact of Canada’s history on Indigenous families and their children. Educators will be challenged to unlearn the history taught to them and relearn how to value the lives of Indigenous peoples. Educators will follow the lead of Indigenous educators who may be directly connected to the lived experience of the generations of ‘stolen children’.

School and Classroom Issues

Addressing Mental Health Issues in the Classroom

(5 hours)

Teachers are noticing the increasing numbers of students in their classes who are exhibiting behaviours that are problematic and perplexing. This five-hour workshop will help develop teachers’ understanding of what mental health issues might look like in students and how best to help the students in their classrooms. Teachers aren’t expected to be psychologists or medical practitioners in resolving these issues, but there are ways for them to help students with mental health issues. 

Assessment for Learning

(3–5 hours)

This workshop reviews the research that shows that doing more formative assessment in classrooms can have dramatic effects on student learning and achievement for all students, and help low achievers the most. The workshop will review the research, clarify the differences between formative assessment for learning and summative assessment of learning, and provide opportunities for participants to discuss what this might look like in the grades and subjects they teach. Participants are asked to bring student work in order to practise giving descriptive feedback.

Assessment Issues in the Secondary Classroom: Challenges and Possibilities 

(90 minutes to 5 hours)

This workshop addresses issues in assessment, evaluation, and grading practices in secondary schools. Issues discussed will include the balance of formative and summative assessment, the use of zero as a mark, marks deductions for late work and other work habit issues, grading group work, averaging marks across the semester/year, re-dos, and retakes. This workshop supports the directions of the revised curriculum and can incorporate core competency based reflections. (This workshop complements the Assessment for Learning workshop and can be booked in conjunction or separately. If both workshops are being considered it is advised that Assessment Issues in the Secondary Classroom be booked to begin this conversation). 

BCTF Code of Ethics: Understanding the Professional Relationship

3 hours

This workshop helps members understand professional and ethical behavior as it relates to the BCTF Code of Ethics. It explores clauses, the rationale, and the processes for enforcement of and for dealing with alleged violations of the code. It defines the role of the Judicial Council and the role of local officers in promoting ethical conduct. Scenarios are used to promote discussion and to apply the Code of Ethics to members’ behaviours and situations.

Challenging Behaviour: Dealing with At-risk and Targeted Students

(5 hours)

What works best for managing difficult student behaviour? This is a question often asked by teachers who, despite establishing a positive classroom environment and clear behavioural expectations, learn about social-emotional learning and its connection to social responsibility. Sharing of information about self-regulation and self-monitoring. This workshop reviews theory, assessment tools, teacher self-reflection, resources, and a variety of strategies for responding to targeted and intensive behavioural needs. Facilitators are behaviour resource teachers, counselors, and teachers with expertise and experience in this field.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Classroom Management

(3–5 hours)

This workshop provides a framework for creating a classroom management plan that includes preventing problems, taking action when problems arise and intervening with individual students. This framework allows teachers to create a management plan that is based on positive behaviour support but is flexible to accommodate many strategies and teaching styles. Included is the opportunity to re-examine personal practice and beliefs, explore respectful discipline approaches and expand classroom management strategies.

Notes: There is another workshop on Challenging Behaviour that deals with individual students in more depth. There is also a workshop on Classroom Management for TTOCs.

Creating a Culture of Professionalism

(3–5 hours)

This workshop explores the ways local and school teams can and do lead on professional issues, develop ideas and practices around professional cultures, and seek ways to enhance and support the autonomous professional practices of teachers.

Creating Inclusive Spaces: Applying an Equity and Inclusion Lens to Your Local, Schools and Classrooms

(5 hours)

Available as a SURT or PSI workshop. This workshop will provide teachers with strategies to help contribute to more inclusive environments. Participants will be introduced to a number of barriers to inclusion based on race, gender identity, sexual orientation, class and physical ability. They will then explore strategies and resources available on the BCTF Equity and Inclusion webpages to address these barriers. Through an inquiry model, participants will begin thinking about specific actions they can take in their classrooms, schools, locals, and communities.

Creating Positive School Culture

(3 hours)

This workshop explores the ways local and school teams can lead on professional issues and professional learning communities, and how teachers can develop ideas and practices around professional cultures. The workshop seeks ways to enhance and support the autonomous professional practices of teachers.

Education for All: 21st Century Inclusion for Special Education Students

(3–5 hours)

The guiding principle of this workshop is that students enter our classrooms with diverse backgrounds and experiences. As teachers, we need a sense of who our learners are and how can we support them in moving forward with their learning. This workshop focuses on four case studies of students and outlines their specific areas of strengths and challenges. Strategies for instruction based on individual learning profiles are suggested. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Differentiated Instruction (DL) are described and explored. Designing instruction to include assessment for learning opportunities to encourage learners to move forward along the learning continuum are included in this workshop.

Effective School Staff Committees

(3 hours)

Government has increased the voice of parents in schools, given greater power to administration, and limited teachers’ roles in decision-making. To maintain teacher influence and control over their professional lives, teachers require their own independent and democratic structure and processes in the worksite. This workshop offers practical advice on how to establish and maintain a school staff committee.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Exploring Place-Based Learning

(3–5 hours)

This workshop will help teachers deepen their understanding of place-based education (PBE), explore the connections between PBE and student inquiry, and develop their confidence and efficacy in using PBE with their students. In the day-long version of this workshop, teachers will have the opportunity to work on a plan for implementing PBE into their own practice.

Exploring Play in K and Beyond 

(5 hours)

Why play? Because play is young children’s work and as such is a critical element of the primary classroom. In this hands-on workshop, primary teachers will explore the possibilities for play, both inside and outside the classroom. The workshop explores how learning through play can help to develop self-regulation and executive functioning skills. The workshop facilitators are experienced Kindergarten and primary teachers with years of experience teaching the Primary years from a play-based perspective. 

Exploring the Connections between Classroom Practice and Self-regulation

(5 hours)

Self-regulation has been described as the IQ of 21st Century. This five-hour workshop explores the concept of self-regulation—what it is and what it isn’t.

The workshop approaches self-regulation from both the teacher’s perspective and the student’s perspective. The connections between classroom practices and self-regulation are explored.

Having Conversations

(5 hours)

Collaborative work can be fraught with challenges: time is wasted, goodwill is lost, and environments that should be productive become unsafe. However, when groups change the way they talk, they change the way they work together. This 5 hour workshop will examine how we can all improve our communication skills by paying attention to our conversations, and in turn help us enhance our work with colleagues, students, and parents.

We wish to thank Danielle Fullan-Kolton and the Manitoba Teachers’ Society for their permission to use these workshop materials.

Managing Conflict

(3–5 hours)

Conflict is inevitable in groups, but it does not need to cause division and animosity if it is managed effectively. This workshop gives participants an insight into their own conflict management styles, and gives some practice in effective conflict management and communication skills. The workshop also provides information about the mediation services available from the BCTF. This workshop is not conflict resolution, but conflict management, focusing on skills to ensure that conflicts do not escalate.

Managing Personal Devices and Social Media in the Classroom

(5 hours)

This new workshop examines classroom management of personal devices and social media. Should personal devices be confiscated from students or should teachers embrace personal devices? This workshop investigates ways to use social media and/or personal devices in a classroom. Does the teacher view them as a toy or a tool? Reflection on current practice and social issues that may impact on the management of social media and personal devices is a component of this workshop. This workshop is based on the inquiry framework.

Marking up the Wrong Tree? Conversations about teaching, assessment, and reporting

The revised curriculum is placing new assessment and evaluation demands on teachers. This workshop will allow participants opportunities to make sure they are doing what is actually needed and useful for assessing student learning.

Navigating Difficult Waters: Relationship Building at the School Level 

(3 hours)

“This workshop exceeded my expectations. Every school in the province should have this opportunity.” – Workshop participant.
This workshop is designed to build community and collegiality through proactive experiences. When schools undergo significant change, such as an influx of new staff, changing roles, reorganization, or curriculum change, relationships can become strained. The intent of this workshop is to provide an understanding of what influences our behaviour when working together and to provide a framework for ongoing teacher led staff development. “It was a joy to listen to the experiences of people in the field with us, understand my needs in the organization, as well as to see where my co-workers are. I love the thinking it started.” - Workshop participant.

"Thanks for giving us such an inspiring starting point! Everyone had such wonderful feedback on your presentation. The staff was very eager to debate our thoughts further and create an action plan to build in collaboration frameworks into the day. We are hoping to meet next week to develop these ideas further. Thank you so much again."
- an elementary school staff rep

Professional Boundary Issues: Teacher/Student Relationships

(3–5 hours)

Sometimes the standards of conduct between students and teachers are ambiguous. Teachers place themselves in jeopardy when boundaries are crossed. This workshop helps school staffs and TTOCs identify the boundaries and provides them with support and resources. Reference will be made to the BCTF Code of Ethics.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Role and Function of the Pro-D Rep

(3 hours)

This updated workshop develops the skills and knowledge of the PD chairs as a union leader using the PD lens as a strategic tool. Strategies are explored for building member and public support for professional development, advocating for teacher-centered PD, and returning control of PD to teachers.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

School Goal Setting

(2 hours)

This workshop is for school staffs or other intact groups, like school departments wanting to explore and establish their vision and goals for their work. Participants will identify, share, and develop action plans in a collegial and supportive atmosphere.

Self-directed PD: The Autonomous Professional

(3 hours)

Participants become familiar with professional self-directed planning options that build and support teachers’ autonomy, professionalism, and collaboration. Participants will explore the differences between effective, teacher-directed PD, the "consumer model" of PD, and types of in-service, as well as some of the stumbling blocks to effective PD.

Social Media

(5 hours)

The social media workshop is designed to educate teachers about the professional and ethical use of social media tools like Facebook and Twitter. The workshop reviews the wide-ranging landscape of social media through the lens of appropriate boundaries and professional conduct. Participants will learn about the value of engaging online as an educator, best practices, and appropriate privacy settings. This five-hour workshop goes beyond the three-hour social media workshop as it also helps staff reps and local associations support members who are using social media or considering it.

Social Media

(3 hours)

The social media workshop is designed to educate teachers about the professional and ethical use of social media tools like Facebook and Twitter. The workshop reviews the wide-ranging landscape of social media through the lens of appropriate boundaries and professional conduct. Participants will learn about the value of engaging online as an activist and educator, best practices, and appropriate privacy settings.

Staying Well at Teaching

(3–5 hours)

Teaching is complex. High public expectations, class composition, educational cutbacks, and increased accountability affect schools, teachers, and students. BCTF surveys identify increased workload and stress as significant concerns for teachers. This workshop helps teachers stay well. Setting boundaries around workload, self-care and smart choices, and de-stressing are key themes. All focus on building shared solutions to both the demands of the work and the isolation of teaching. Participants will reconnect with colleagues, laugh, and tell stories as they assess their work-life balance and explore staying well and creating a healthy workplace. Skilled teacher facilitators will design the session to suit the needs of each school staff. Retreat locations away from the school are recommended, where possible.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Student Inquiry: Putting students in charge of their own learning

(2-3 hours)

In this workshop, teachers are encouraged to embrace inquiry with students. Teachers will learn how Inquiry Based Learning (IBL) can be used as a tool to enhance student learning. Inquiry and implications for assessment will also be explored.

Student Self-Assessment: The Journey Starts Here 

(5 hours)

This 5 hour workshop will examine current research on student self-assessment and identify the benefits of supporting self-assessment in classrooms. Participants will reflect on their own classroom practice and discuss how they might implement effective student self-assessment. The workshop will also give participants some practical tools for the implementation of student self-assessment and provide an opportunity for sharing of ideas and strategies.

Teacher Inquiry Program (TIP): How to implement TIP in the district/school

This workshop is designed to inform participants about the BCTF Teacher Inquiry Program (TIP) and how to apply for a TIP grant. Participants will explore the components of this BCTF-facilitated program and learn about the BCTF self-directed professional development model of teacher inquiry. Participants will have an opportunity to assess their district/school’s openness towards teacher inquiry and to develop a plan of action to recruit interested members to a TIP in their local or school.

Working Together with Parents is Good for Kids and Teachers: Practical Strategies to Build Positive Teacher-Parent Relationships

(3 hours)

Positive relationships between parents and teachers enhance student learning. Ministry of Education reporting requirements are explored in this workshop. Concrete ideas for parent-teacher conferencing and preparing for IEP and behavioral meetings with parents are featured in this newly revised workshop. In today’s school climate of ascending parental rights, teachers’ positive communication strategies and conflict-resolution skills are often required. This workshop for school staffs overviews the current context influencing roles and responsibilities, provides introductory communication and conflict skill practice, and focuses on how to build shared advocacy between teachers and parents on behalf of students.

Social Justice and Global Education

Advancing Equity and Inclusion in Our Schools and Communities

(3 hours)

Participants will leave the workshops with ideas they can implement towards an action plan to advance equity and inclusion in their communities. After exploring some of the challenges faced by members of equity-seeking groups, workshop participants will become inspired to delve deeper into the barriers to equity and inclusion. Through an understanding of the factors that contribute to oppression of members of equity-seeking groups, participants will consider acts of allyship they can take to help overcome barriers to full inclusion.

Assertive Communication

(3 hours)

This workshop teaches the key principles of communication by exploring the differences between passive, aggressive, and assertive communication styles. Participants will develop skills through a variety of exercises, role play and practice, in order to effectively communicate in their classroom, schools, union work, or personal lives.

Bafa Bafa (secondary)/Rafa Rafa (elementary)

(3 hours)

(Cross-cultural simulation game)
Participants experience what it is like to live and cope in another culture. After the simulation, presenters will facilitate a discussion with the participants on what assumptions or perceptions they made, and the behaviour they witnessed about one another’s culture. Analysis of common ground and barriers between cultures will be explored. Other similar games and classroom activities will be provided in a handout package.

Creating a Gender-Inclusive School Culture

(3 hours)

This workshop will help develop an understanding of the risks facing trans, non-binary and gender diverse students, as well as the protective factors, gain increased familiarity with terminology used by the trans, non-binary and gender diverse communities, and increased awareness of gender identity and gender expression. Best practices for supporting a student through gender transition within the school system will be covered. Although the focus is on trans, non-binary and gender diverse students, gender-inclusive schools help all students to feel safe at school.

Creating Cultures of Peace 

(3 hours)

In line with the big ideas and core competencies of the revised curriculum, this interactive workshop provides resources for teachers and their students to create peaceful learning communities, and to discuss current global realities. Activities will incorporate the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and discuss the effects of war and violence on children and youth. Lesson sequences will be provided and explored surrounding the Palestine-Israel Conflict, and Olympic Truce, which was recently revived by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to emphasize the role sport can play in building a more peaceful world.  

Creating Inclusive Spaces: Applying an Equity and Inclusion Lens to Your Local, Schools and Classrooms

(5 hours)

Available as a SURT or PSI workshop. This workshop will provide teachers with strategies to help contribute to more inclusive environments. Participants will be introduced to a number of barriers to inclusion based on race, gender identity, sexual orientation, class and physical ability. They will then explore strategies and resources available on the BCTF Equity and Inclusion webpages to address these barriers. Through an inquiry model, participants will begin thinking about specific actions they can take in their classrooms, schools, locals, and communities.

Developing Allyship Skills to Break the Cycle of Cyberbullying

(3 hours)

Teachers will leave this workshop with knowledge and strategies to address students’ involvement in cyberbullying. Workshop participants will develop a stronger understanding of cyberbullying and the social media platforms where it takes place. They will learn about proactive measures to raise students’ awareness of this increasingly prevalent issue. Participants will also develop strategies to identify students who may be involved in cyberbullying and offer the appropriate support. 

Engaging Men and Boys to Prevent Gender-Based Violence

3-hour or 90-minute workshop

Workshop participants will deepen their understanding of how socialization contributes to the development of oppressive attitudes and behaviours based on gender. Teachers will begin by examining the varying degrees of violence against women. After considering the concepts of gender identity, power, and privilege, participants will reflect on their own values related to these topics and begin to develop a plan to uphold them. Teachers will leave the workshop equipped with a deeper understanding of the role men and boys can play in overcoming violence, along with an enhanced commitment to taking on this role. This workshop session will be offered to participants who identify as men. Another session will be offered for all teachers.

Global Education: Bringing Global Perspectives into your Classroom

(3 hours)

Are you looking for new ways to energize how you teach existing units? Introducing a global perspective into your classroom can be challenging, but exciting. Bring your existing ideas, a current unit, or theme to this workshop and let us show you how to integrate, infuse, and deliver it from a global perspective at any grade level. A global education approach activates student interest as it increases personal engagement and involvement in the classroom, the surrounding community, and our world. This workshop is beneficial for K–12.

Help End Child Poverty in BC Classrooms, Schools, and Local Communities

(3 hours)

Participants will raise their awareness on poverty issues in their classrooms and communities by using the BCTF Social Justice Lens and the BCTF Aboriginal Lens. They will assess their own school's, local's and community needs. Then they will be provided with the opportunity to work in groups on a plan of action that they can be done during the workshop to address their student's needs on issues related to poverty. 

In the shoes of the bully, the bystander and the victim: Building self-awareness, social awareness, and empathy

(3 hours)

This workshop will help to develop an understanding of self-awareness, social awareness and empathy building around bullying and bystander issues. Key skills and strategies will be used to develop and understanding of the factors contributing to the different roles in relationships between bully, victim, bystander and ally. Through talking circles and reflective listening activities, ideas will be presented on how to support change through the creation of a safe and inclusive classroom. There will be opportunities to further explore the teacher’s role as an elder and mentor to students. Handouts and resources will be provided for teachers to integrate this approach into their classroom.

Incorporating Antiracist Strategies into BC's Revised Curriculum

(3 hours to full day)

This workshop looks at privilege in society and how the legacy of our colonial past has shaped our present.  It provides some youth perspectives on racism in schools, and explores strategies to recognize and eliminate racism in society, classrooms, schools, and community.

Organizing for Change

(3 hours)

This practical workshop will provide you with the tools needed to develop an effective strategic plan for your committee, school, or local on an emerging issue. Using a variety of strategic tools, such as strength inventory, force field analysis, and the social/community barometer, participants will have a chance to examine barriers and maximize potential for success.

Poverty IS a Classroom Issue

(1.5–3 hours)

In 2019, the BC Government finally moved to implement a poverty reduction plan that will begin to help the 20% of our children who live in poverty. This workshop helps teachers to develop an awareness of the issue of poverty and its implication for our students. It will provide challenges for teachers on the assumptions we make about children living in poverty and provide strategies for teachers on how to support children who may be experiencing discrimination at school because of their socio-economic status.

Promoting Healthy Youth Relationships: Educating Against Gender-Based Violence

This workshop raises awareness of healthy and unhealthy youth relationships and gender-based violence. Workshop participants increase their understanding of the impact of dating and sexualized violence on youth. Through the exploration of lessons and strategies to address these issues in the classroom, the workshop enhances the capacity of schools and educators to encourage healthy youth relationships. A series of lesson plans and comprehensive resources are provided for use in the classroom.

Reach Out, Speak Out on Homophobia and Transphobia

(3 hours)

This workshop focuses on how to be an ally and support LGBTQ+ youth within schools. Educators will develop an understanding of sexuality and gender as spectrums and will explore essential terminology and pronouns. It will increase understanding of the impact of homophobia and transphobia on youth and look at strategies and best practices to address these. The importance of GSA’s and LGBTQ+ policies will be shared. This workshop is highly recommended for educators wanting to create an inclusive school culture so that all students feel safe and included.

Responding to Racism in the Workplace and the Classroom

(3 hours)

This skills-based Antidiscrimination Response Training workshop is a powerful, practical way to promote awareness, and empathy, and to develop the skills to effectively respond to discriminatory remarks and incidents of racism, sexist, and homophobia in the classroom and the workplace.

Role and Function of the Social Justice Contact

(3–5 hours)

School-based social justice representatives working with the local’s Social Justice Committee can explore their roles and the functions they have within the school and local. They will have an opportunity to set out long- and short-term plans and explore how to work in coalition with others in their schools and community. 

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Sexual Health Education: It's Fun!

This recently revised BCTF workshop provides participants with essential information about sexual health. The topic of consent is discussed in detail. Workshop participants will become familiar with several recommended resources and some fundamental strategies for teaching the mandated sexual health curriculum to BC students at all grade levels in public schools. The workshop will help teachers in accessing resources and developing lesson plans that satisfy the curriculum, as well as navigate the social and cultural context. This session is sex-positive and aims to empower educators to create an inclusive and comprehensive sexual health education program. 

Social Justice in Every Classroom

(3 hours)

How socially just is your classroom? Do you include social justice and human rights as part of your curriculum? Would you like your students to participate in social justice activities locally and globally? This workshop is designed for teachers to expand and enhance their teaching strategies for including social justice issues in the classroom. These practical activities can be used throughout the K–12 curriculum.

Strategies for Discussing Controversial Issues

(3 hours)

Discussing controversial issues with students is an important part of social justice, the inquiry process, and building the skills for students to become active, engaged and critically-minded democratic citizens. This workshop provides practical classroom strategies to discuss controversial issues in a respectful manner.

Teaching Green: Integrating Environmental Justice Issues Across the Curriculum

(90 minutes to all day)

This workshop has five modules: Taking Action for Climate Justice, Food Security, Water Rights, Sustainable Resource Use, and Sustainable Transportation. Please see module descriptions below for further details. Choose one or more. Available for K–12.

Taking Action for Climate Justice (3 hours)

Workshop participants will consider barriers to teaching about the climate change emergency and develop solutions to overcome these barriers. Teachers will also learn strategies to support students in using critical thinking skills to approach climate change through a solutions based approach.

Food Security (75–120 minutes)

Participants will explore food security and food sovereignty issues and their social justice impacts, locally and globally through activities that can be applied in their classrooms. They will take an inventory of local food security issues, and then consider local food security and its cultural intersections. The final step will be to create an action plan designed to ensure food security for the school community.

Water Rights (90–120 minutes)

Focusing on the global water crisis through a social justice lens, participants will explore the connections between water access/water privatization issues, human rights, and social justice. Through an inquiry model, teachers will consider how water resource conservation issues are relevant in the classroom, the community, nationally and globally. The workshop will provide opportunities for teachers to explore water rights teaching resources and to develop a plan to support students in taking concrete actions. 

Sustainable Resource Use (90–120 minutes)

This workshop introduces strategies to support students in exploring the social, economic and environmental impacts of exploiting our natural resources. Participants will consider how to successfully bring this topic into their classrooms by using techniques to discuss controversial issues. The workshop introduces a number of teaching resources and explores ways to link them to the revised curriculum.

Sustainable Transportation (45–60 minutes)

Participants will explore strategies to support their students in examining how transportation of goods and people has changed over time, the consequences of these changes, and the intersections between transportation and social justice. The workshop will provide opportunities for teachers to explore sustainable transportation teaching resources and to ways to link them to the revised curriculum. 

Teachers Teaching on Call

Classroom Management for TTOCs

(2–3 hours)

TTOCs must establish rapport with students quickly and use management strategies that work immediately. The workshop will explore the basics of classroom management and how TTOCs can adapt them for their work. Practical strategies for creating a positive environment and taking constructive action with individual students will be explored.

This workshop is available for online facilitation.

Contract Awareness for TTOCs

(3 hours)

This is a new workshop specifically designed for TTOCs by TTOCs so that TTOC contacts/chairs will become more familiar with their local and provincial collective agreements. The workshop is intended to increase the confidence of TTOC contacts/chairs in dealing with collective agreement issues. It is also intended to explore and identify collective agreement rights that are missing from local language and the provincial contract.

Dealing with Stress in the Workplace

(90 minutes to 2 hours)

TTOCs are a particularly vulnerable sector of the teaching profession. This workshop examines ways to cope with stress and the unpredictability of life as a TTOC. We will look at the emotional and physical reactions to stress, how to identify specific sources of stress, ways of problem solving as well as general ways of relieving stress.

Employment Insurance: Navigating the EI Claim Process

(2 hours)

This seminar helps TTOCs understand the steps to follow in applying for, and obtaining, EI benefits.

New Teachers  

(5 hours)

This workshop is divided into five modules. Organizers may select specific modules, or book the entire workshop. This workshop is available for online facilitation.


- History of the BCTF
- Professional Relationships (code of ethics, TRB standards, boundaries, and working with parents)
- Myth Busters: Rights and Responsibilities (collective agreement, occupational health and safety, and evaluations)
- Professional Learning (professional development, in-service, PSAs, and curriculum)
- Your Union! (Involvement, services).

This workshop may also be booked in conjunction with a New Teacher Induction Ceremony. This new workshop introduces new members to the local union and the BCTF. It introduces new members to the collective agreement and highlights sections most relevant to new members. It explores the responsibilities and challenges of maintaining positive professional relations with students, parents, and colleagues. It builds awareness about professional issues such as professional development and professional autonomy. It promotes the work of the union and encourages new members to participate in the union. The economic, social, and democratic contributions that unions have made to Canadian society are included in this workshop. 

Reality 101: A Day in the Life of a TTOC

(90 minutes to 2 hours)

This workshop is designed to support teachers teaching on call with current teaching practices and resources, and to enhance their confidence in their professional status.

TTOC Life: A Student Teacher Workshop

(2 hours)

This workshop was designed for TTOCs to build awareness about professional issues. It also provides information to student teachers on jobs and the role of a TTOC. This workshop introduces student teachers to the BCTF and TTOC services.

Work-life Balance for TTOCs

(90 minutes to 2 hours)

Cell phones are attached to TTOCs! Call outs from the board can happen at any time. Call out is uncertain, the grade/subject that TTOCs will be called out for on any day is uncertain. This workshop is designed specifically for TTOCs and offers strategies for maintaining work-life balance in a particularly stressful role. Setting attainable and realistic goals are a feature of this workshop.