Lessons From the Earth: Storytelling, Art & Indigenous Knowledge Teacher Resource Kit – Primary Grades
Dufferin Peel Catholic District School Board
Lessons From the Earth is a resource guide for educators that provides a practical application of Indigenous Knowledge into the classroom. The focus of learning is grounded in a traditional Anishinaabe story, Jiig Nong Aadsookan, The Fisher Story. Included are sample lessons and video modules that support the traditional teachings embedded within the story. Lessons From the Earth is a provocation for student inquiry into topics such as the environment, First Peoples of Canada, Science, Social Studies, as well as important concepts such as love, respect and balance.
The IRSSS’s Education Project was created with support and in conjunction with the community-based Vancouver Foundation. It is designed to help educators teach their students about Indian Residential Schools by developing accurate, balanced, and engaging lesson plans and resources to supplement Social Studies and other course curriculums.
There is a nice article published in the Minnesota Conservation Volunteer which examines Ojibwe lifeways in the northwoods by AIRC Executive Director Anton Treuer. The article is archived for free and has an accompanying teacher’s guide for incorporation into classroom use.
Lead Writer: Tanya Senk
Unit Writer: Shelley Dennis
Reviewer: Lisa Sanders
Grade 6, Visual Arts: Drawing
The purpose of this unit is to infuse Aboriginal (First Nations, Metis and Inuit) perspectives into the curriculum through Visual Arts. It is important to avoid replicating and producing stereotypical representations of Aboriginal peoples. Therefore, teachers need to include lessons on how contemporary Aboriginal artists create art to comment on identity, society and the world.
Through this unit, students will explore and strengthen their own sense of identity, will reaffirm their value systems, and will see their place in society through experiencing Aboriginal teachings such as, The Seven Grandfather Teachings (Anishnawbe) and through the teachings embedded in Ontario’s Character Education resource called, Finding Common Ground. The student’s explorations, discoveries and learning will be represented through a range of drawing experiences.
Teachers are encouraged to access local and provincial resource support to Aboriginal studies and should invite Aboriginal artist, story tellers, and Elders into the classroom from their local communities wherever possible.
YouTube Video Title: Shi-shi-etko
Four days before having to leave her family and home for residential school, Shi-Shi-Etko learns how important it is to hold on to her memories.
Director: Kate Kroll
Author: Nicola I. Campbell
Actors: Ta’Kaiya Blaney, Inez Point, Lee Prevost, Rita Pete
Producer: Marilyn Thomas, Monkey Ink Media
Funders: DGC Kickstart, BC Arts Council, Bravo!FACT
A group of young people from the James Bay Cree community of Whapmagoostui, Que., has arrived at Parliament Hill in Ottawa, ending a 1,600-kilometre trek meant to bring attention to aboriginal issues.
Six youths and a guide left Whapmagoostui in January to snowshoe and walk to Ottawa in support of the Idle No More movement. They called the trek “The Journey of Nishiyuu,” which means “The Journey of the People” in Cree.
7 Generations* is an epic, four-part graphic novel series that spans three centuries and seven generations. The central character in the series is Edwin. Edwin, an Aboriginal teenager, must learn of his family’s past if he is to have any future. The impact of his journey of discovery, and the revelation that follows, will change his life.
Common Threads: Full Circle: First Nations, Métis, Inuit Ways of Knowing
The Common Threads resources consist of high quality, classroom-ready resources for Ontario secondary school teachers. The lessons are designed using specific Ontario Ministry of Education curriculum expectations.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
5. EDUCATOR RESOURCES
8. VIDEO: WAYS OF KNOWING WHO I AM
Leadership in Aboriginal communities
Important Aboriginal places
Natural resources and Aboriginal peoples
Small businesses in Aboriginal communities 31. EMOTIONAL
Life in Aboriginal communities
Third World Canada
Protests 42. MENTAL
What are treaties?
What are land claims?
The importance of completing land claims 65. SPIRITUAL
Relationship between land and Aboriginal people
Land use agreements as sacred promises
Making sense of treaties
Arriving at Residential School
Education today 94. EMOTIONAL
Life in Residential Schools
Identity conflict: between two worlds
A positive experience of Residential School
Intergenerational impacts 110. MENTAL
Aboriginal ways of knowing
A typical day in Residential School
Communities moving forward 117. SPIRITUAL
The significance of the Apology
Health issues for Aboriginal people
Nutritional quality of foods
Nutritional quality of traditional foods
Business opportunities related to traditional foods 146. EMOTIONAL
Introduction to Aboriginal circles
How circles are used
Applying circle concepts 153. MENTAL
Addiction, depression and suicide
Aboriginal students and mentorship
A holistic view of health
Gangs 177. SPIRITUAL
Traditional beliefs as the foundation
Where do I fit in?
Importance of clan systems 192. EMOTIONAL
Role and responsibilities of families
Impact of language on identity
Impact of Residential Schools on identity
Sixties scoop and identity 205. MENTAL
Who is Aboriginal?
Portraits of a people
Aboriginal identity in media
Stereotypes of Aboriginal people 213. SPIRITUAL
Art forms across Canada
Connecting story and art forms
The sounds of Aboriginal artists
222. ABORIGINAL TEACHING RESOURCES (DVD)
232. ABORIGINAL TEACHING RESOURCES (STREAM ONLINE)
244. ABORIGINAL TEACHING RESOURCES (WEBSITES)
247. CLASS DISCUSSION RUBRIC
248. WRITTEN WORK RUBRIC
249. ORAL PRESENTATION RUBRIC
250. DEBATE PANEL DISCUSSION RUBRIC
251. GROUP PARTICIPATION RUBRIC
252. LETTER TO AN OFFICIAL RUBRIC
253. RESEARCH REPORT RUBRIC
254. MULTIMEDIA PRESENTATION RUBRIC
255. FLYER OR BROCHURE RUBRIC
1. John Goddard, The Last Stand of the Lubicon Cree (Vancouver: Douglas & McIntyre, 1991),
2. Amnesty International Video titled “Our Land, My People”
Length: (70 minutes = 1 hour and 15 minutes)
Objective of Lesson:
This lesson introduces students to the Lubicon Lake Nation and enables students to understand the contemporary impact that historically racialized and colonial policies have had on Aboriginal peoples in Canada by looking at the Lubicon as one example. They will examine the history of the Lubicon Lake Nation and situate it within colonial practices of expansion and assertion of sovereignty. They will be able to draw parallels between legal and political methods used in the past and the present to establish Canadian (federal/provincial) control over Aboriginal peoples and First Nations. They will consider the environmental and social impacts of provincial and federal economic actions on Aboriginal peoples and their ways of life.
Lessons are suitable for first grade and up and to first time adult beginners. Students will develop listening and speaking skills. This booklet was written to assist students who wish to learn the Anishnaabe language. The author does not claim that students will learn the Anishnaabe language solely from this written material. It is a tool which may help the students learn when used with other materials. (..continued on page 4)