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Indigenous Knowledge/Resources in the classroom

Indigenous Knowledge in the classroom does not need to be an intimidating topic. The integration of culture can be as simple as displaying an important item, reading a culturally inspired book or even inviting an Elder to teach the class or having the group participate in a local ceremony or even a class trip.

There are also so many opportunities to integrate Indigenous Knowledge into the curriculum and many Resources that can be used (even without being an expert)!

WHAT IS INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE ANYWAY? " Indigenous knowledge is to share individual knowledge and beliefs that are passed down by generations. It is to to know the value, sacredness and interconnectedness of nature's ecosystems with everything. It is knowing that it is descriptive in belief. It is knowing that relationships with one and all are sacred. It is knowing that traditions are responsible for teaching "morals" and one's way of life".- Sacha Stevens
"The Indigenous world view Society operates in a state of relatedness. Everything and everyone is related. There is real belief that people, objects and the environment are all connected. Law, kinship and spirituality reinforce this connectedness. Identity comes from connections". Mary Young (FNMI part1 candidate)
Elders in the classroom, drumming, tipi teachings, class trips and traditional food at the NBIFC!

There are many supporting documents from both the ministry and educational resources. Such as: Canadian curriculum teacher helper and other such purchasable black-line masters/lesson plans that support grade specific expectations. Ministry document: Aboriginal Perspectives supports grade specific tasks that line up with every grade and which expectation best suits the teaching. Nelson Education has a series called Circle of Life that supports reading through culture. There is also the Native Reflections catalog that has many items/school supplies/cultural posters etc...

There is usually an Indigenous lead in school boards that can assist finding these documents as well. Also keep in mind that the NSL teachers can always offer ideas and help connect you with community members.

The Cultural Competency Report from the Assembly of First Nations Education, Jurisdiction and Governance is an excellent document to help open the eyes to the realities of peoples views on Aboriginal student experience.

Resources for rethinking: Aboriginal Voices in the Curriculum A guide to teaching aboriginal studies in k-8 classrooms *** This is an excellent web resources because it does not give you isolated ideas but rather for a consistent basis.

Displaying something as significant as the Medicine Wheel, can be the start to sharing Indigenous Knowledge and thus creating a meaningful relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities, regardless if there is an Indigenous student in the classroom. We must be sensitive to the fact that many of these students either do not self identify or do not know much about the heritage and culture.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. -- Lao Tzu --

LIVING WITH THE MEDICINE WHEEL TEACHINGS IN MIND MAKES FOR A MORE BALANCED LIFESTYLE NOT ONLY FOR ONESELF BUT IN YOUR WORK AND COMMUNITY!

LET US PUT OUR MINDS TOGETHER AND SEE WHAT life WE CAN MAKE FOR OUR CHILDREN ---SITTING BULL
INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE BELONGS IN OUR SCHOOLS AND CLASSROOMS. THE UNDERSTANDING OF THIS INTEGRAL PART OF CANADIAN HISTORY IS ESSENTIAL FOR OUR FUTURE GENERATIONS. You do not have to be Indigenous to teach aBOUT this, just like you don't have to be an artist to teach art.

IF IDENTITY COMES FROM CONNECTIONS, WHAT CONNECTIONS WILL YOU MAKE TO HELP SHAPE THE STUDENTS IN YOUR CLASSROOM?

WE smudge ourselves to cleanse our mind, body and spirit. this is sacred medicine
“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.” –Chief Seattle

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