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Issue #40
March, 2013

Years of Inuit History and Heritage

Source: Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami

Summary: For 5,000 years, the people and culture known throughout the world as Inuit have occupied the vast territory stretching from the shores of the Chukchi Peninsula of Russia, east across Alaska and Canada, to the southeastern coast of Greenland. It is here, based on the ability to utilize the physical environment and living resources of this geographic region known as the Arctic, where Inuit culture developed and history unfolded.

Inuit are an original people of the land now known as Canada, and their history represents an important and fascinating story. It is not just a story about an early chapter of Canadian history. Indeed it is an epic tale in the history of human settlement and the endurance of culture. Each chapter of the story provides valuable lessons and insights about issues that matter to cultures everywhere. Their history is about people and their relationship to the environment and to each other; about dealing with change as well as the causes and consequences of change forced on them through colonialism; and about how they have re-established control over cultural, economic and political destiny through land claims and self government.

Unfortunately until now, most of the research on Inuit culture and history has been done by individuals who come from outside the culture. Since the information that these individuals collected was seldom made available to the Inuit themselves, the image held by much of the outside world was someone else’s creation, not their own.

This website represents an important step in the direction of telling the Inuit story from their own worldview.

Successful transition programs from prior-to-school to school for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

Source: Sue Dockett, Bob Perry, Terry Mason, Tracey Simpson, Peter Howard, Diana Whitton, Shirley Gilbert, Sophia Pearce, Prathyusha Sanagavarapu, Jen Skattebol, Christine Woodrow, University of Western Sydney, Charles Sturt University, Australian Catholic University

Summary:In early 2004, the NSW Department of Education and Training (DET) sought expressions of interest from suitably qualified researchers for a project titled Successful Transition Programs from Prior-To-School to School for Indigenous Australian Students. This project was funded by the National Fund for Education Research (NFER).

The project was designed to:

  • identify sites where successful transition to school programs for Aboriginal communities are operating;
  • identify the reasons for success, and to identify strategies for successful transition to school for Aboriginal children;
  • trial these strategies in sites that nominate as experiencing difficulties in relation to transition to school for Aboriginal children; and
  • disseminate strategies for successful transition to school for Aboriginal communities, and, in turn, improve learning outcomes for Aboriginal children.

A case study methodology, based on working together with school, prior-to-school and community members within a series of case study sites (10) and trial sites (5) across NSW was used to address the following key issues:

  1. What are the features of successful programs of transition from prior-to school to school that lead to improved student learning outcomes for Aboriginal children?
  2. To what extent are these features transferable to other contexts and to what extent might these features be unique to any one particular site?
  3. In what ways can linkages between schools, early childhood services and Aboriginal communities be improved to increase the educational attainment of Aboriginal children?
  4. What strategies are successful in engaging families who don’t readily engage with early childhood services and schools?

Handbook for Aboriginal Mentoring

Source: Alberta Children’s Services, Alberta International, Intergovernmental and Aboriginal Relations
Teachers and Community Workers

Summary: A handbook on the What? Why? How? and Who? of mentoring in Aboriginal communities to assist students to stay in school and be successful. Included is a checklist of what should be included in any program and how to get started.

Guide to Canadian Aboriginal Education Resources: Queen’s University

Source: Researched and Prepared by Heather B. O’Reilly, Queen’s University

Summary: This guide is a selected list of resources prepared for the Queen’s Education Library. Please search the Library catalogue and other indexes for books and articles on your topic. For example, search the K12 reading collection for books for elementary and secondaryschool students using Boolean searches like this: (indian? or native? or aboriginal or “first nations”) and juvenile.

Also refer to the broader guide on Aboriginal Studies:

Grade 12 Current Topics in First Nations, Métis and Inuit Studies: A Foundation for Implementation

Source: Manitoba Ministry of Education
Grade 12 students

Summary: Grade 12 Current Topics in First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Studies: A Foundation for Implementation supports the empowerment of students through the exploration of the histories, traditions, cultures, worldviews, and contemporary issues of Indigenous peoples in Canada and worldwide. Students gain knowledge and develop the values, as well as the critical thinking, communication, analytical, and inquiry skills, that will enable them to better understand past and present realities of Indigenous peoples. Additionally, exploration of topics such as self-determination, self-government, and language and cultural reclamation allows students to understand and work towards the post-colonial future envisioned by Indigenous peoples.

Aboriginal Games Crunchers Information Sheet

Source: Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada
Ages 8-12

Summary: Teachers, are you looking for a fun fastfacts game about Aboriginal Peoples in Canada? If so, download this interactive resource today! The cruncher is a fun colouring activity and will help children ages 8 to 12 learn more about First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples in Canada.

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